Hometown Chicana-Punk group Fea has found its new guitarist. Local musician Bobby Rivas will be joining in time for a summer tour with Agent Orange and a new album recording later this year. The band also confirmed the return of singer Letty Martinez, which is welcome news for both fans and the band’s future.
“I’ve always been an Agent Orange fan, and in recent years I’ve been a big Fea fan too, so the whole thing seems a bit surreal,” he said about the news, which was announced earlier this week.
“It’s been a while for me, so I’m itching to get back into the touring life as much as they are.”
Rivas will be replacing the role previously held by Aaron Magaña (of Lorita Drive and Michael J. and the Foxes), but his current outfit Islands & Tigers will have at least one more show at Imagine Fest on March 15. Rivas’ previous band resume also includes acts such as Deer Vibes, The Transit Cura, and Facing Forward.
After Aaron Magaña’s exit, the band held open auditions to fill the void, yielding several contenders for consideration. Members of Fea were already familiar with Rivas from his previous collaborations with Magaña. When they received demo footage of Rivas playing their music, he seemed a natural fit. After an interview and a bit of Morrissey karaoke, the band told him he was in.
“We had been trying guitarists out from everywhere, but decided to stay local,” Phanie Diaz tells us. “We knew Bobby would be able to pick up the songs fairly fast and execute the solos. He also seemed like he would be easy to get along with.”
The members have had a few practices together already. Phanie reports everything is sounding great so far, and that Bobby has even added to some of the songs. She is also happy to have Letty back, who is recently recovered from health concerns.
“We definitely have a lot of influences in common though so learning the music felt really natural and intuitive,” adds Rivas. “We’ve been meeting a couple times a week to polish up the instrumentals and work on arranging some new tunes. By the time [Letty is] 100%, I think we’ll be more than ready to get on stage.”
See the new lineup’s first show together April 7 at the Bang Bang Bar. To follow Fea and check their summer tour dates, follow them on Facebook.