Entertainment Simply Jessica

SIMPLY JESSICA: Nadia Reiman and Marlon Bishop talk Latino heroes of rock ‘n’ roll

Nadia Reiman is the producer of Latino USA, a Peabody-award winning program distributed by National Public Radio.

Her recent musical episode, “Latino Heroes of Rock ‘n’ Roll,” wants the world to know that Latinos have been instrumental in every single element of rock ‘n’ roll and have made huge contributions in the musical genre.

The music editor for Latino USA wanted to tell the stories of the people that were part of rock history. She takes her listeners through time as she talks about the Latino musical characters that helped shape rock, taking you on a musical journey with her.

Reiman wants listeners who haven’t heard of these people to learn how much these Latinos greats had an influence on rock ‘n’ roll.

She wants you to discover each one of these musical pioneers.

“We wanted to shed a light on the huge role that Latinos played in rock ‘n’ roll,” Reiman said. “I want this to be an eye opener.”

Marlon Bishop
Marlon Bishop

Marlon Bishop, a co-producer with Reiman, isn’t surprised that little is known about these Latino heroes.

“The history of rock ‘n’ roll is like many other histories in the United States, it’s told in black and white,” Bishop said. “Latinos are not given credit because they aren’t talked about in this musical area.”

Reiman has been a radio producer since 2005 and wants people to know that the more that this is discussed, the more it will drive home the point that there was not a then and now with Latinos in music.

“Latinos have always been in rock ‘n’ roll,” she said. “ We must show the next generation that people like you made this music.”

At Latino USA, Bishop focuses on long-form narratives, investigative projects, immigration and culture reporting.

Bishop paused during our telephone interview then he said.

“Latinos have always been in the background in rock ‘n’ roll,” Bishop said. “A lot of history has never been told because we put things in boxes. We think Latino music is for Latinos by Latinos.”

Among the people featured in Latino Heroes of Rock ‘n’ Roll are Ritchie Valens, who was a teenager when he died in a plane crash in 1959 along with Buddy Holly and other rock ‘n’ roll personalities.

Chan Romero released the hit “Hippy Hippy Shake” in 1959.

Alice Bag was the front woman of an early punk band and was known for her wild stage shows.

To hear Latino Heroes of Rock ‘n’ Roll, visit 

Be yourself. I’m Simply Jessica JcAden. You can reach me at jess.gosnell@gmail.com.