Tag Archives: artist

Marcos Diary Entry: The Blackout Beat Anthology, A Celebration of Armando and Marcos’ Work Up Until Now

10 May

11214159_10205434368530914_1633519626845562234_n-1What a month it has been!  The year has brought challenge after challenge and May has already proved to be some sort of insane endurance round, pushing mind, body, wallets and relationships to their limits. Luckily for me I came up with an idea during a shower,  that I was able to work on in small pieces, which has done wonders to keep my sanity in tact.   In many ways I felt like I was stuck in a standstill, paralyzed in inactivity as I tried to complete Emmett’s project, outline a book project I started all, while putting a set together for a new show and working at a school for 50 hours during the week.  I understandably ran out of creative juice and decided to take a step back before taking so many forward. Listening to the first Circus House album also led me to decision to start this project.  Not hearing that record for so long allowed me to hear it with fresh ears.  I was proud of it, proud of what Armando had envisioned.  I then began listening to our entire catalog.  I became inspired to do something to celebrate the work we had done. SubstandardFullSizeRender Each song, each beat told two stories.  One is the one that the song is written about, the other is the one that only Armando, I and the artists we worked with experienced at the time we created the song.  That is what really means the most to me about this project. It’s both humbling and overwhelming to think about everything we have been through while chasing this dream: leaving Pueblo for more opportunity and a bigger stage, our first commercial recording studio, the studios that followed, all the artists we worked with, the performances, the highs, the breakdowns, the parties, dances, beats, recording sessions, press and all the unexpected developments.   Above all else, Armando and I both went through our own personal and creative evolutions.  For me this included redefining what it means to be successful. The process for putting this project together was different than anything I’ve done before since the songs were already made.  I had to start by going through our catalog and pulling the best song and highlighting my favorite parts.  Initially I wanted to do each songs in chronological order, but eventually I decided against this because it was so much more fun to blend songs that would have never been heard back to back before, like a Juan Alvarez song and a Circus House song. The transitions, effects, song order and energy level are all the building blocks that I’ve used to weave our entire catalog into one continuous mix that tells the story of our creative journey.  Well not all of it, just about 10 years of it. It did take a lot of work and creative energy to complete The Blackout Anthology Mixtape EP but in a weird way it also recharged me so that I could complete the other projects I took a break from.  Now that I’m about two weeks away from releasing this free project I’ve already begun mapping out the songs, sets and new concepts for current and future projects. To help build excitement for the release of The Blackout Beat Anthology, I’ve been posting pictures and video clips with captions that tell the story of The  Blackout Beat.  It’s a personal marketing tactic for a projects that’s personal to me.  As we get closer I plan on ramping it up some cool video stuff and a very special event that no one dare miss.  And I mean that, if there is one Blackout Beat show to see it will be The Blackout Beat Anthology show, and not for reasons that are immediately obvious. More updates this week. -m


My Brother is Down But Not Out, We All Remain Determined

14 Jan


2015 began with a bang, a crack actually.  Proving that 2015 can be just as dramatic as the year before, my brother Armando, rang in the new year with a broken hip.  My family and I spent the first week of the new year in the hospital.  Armando, was introduced to new levels of pain as his friends and family huddled around him. Flowers, get well cards, books, magazines with several bags of Cheetos and Pepsi surrounded Armando’s hospital bed. There was no shortage of love in room 609.  It hurt all of us to see him in that state.  Armando is not a person I’ve ever seen this weak.

Carepackage for Armando Garibay.

Carepackage for Armando Garibay.

The moments before surgery are the ones that really put everything into perspective.  Blackout, work, money, everything… It all means nothing when someone closest to you lies helpless in front of you, uncertain of the future that awaits them following their anesthesia induction.  It also made me realize that eventually I will have to endure more of these moments in the future.  There will be a day when I loose my father.  There will be a day when I will loose others close to me and I will no choice but to keep it together, just like my dad did for us.  Part of me just assumed since I lost my mother and friend together at such a young age that I would not have to ever deal with something like that again.  Young Marcos thought that plan was great because he believed (and kind of still does) that his mind would not survive another loss.  This  accident made me face the fact that I cannot escape moments that will be far more painful that seeing my broken brother.

Lalo Garibay, Armando's 24/7 caretaker.

Lalo Garibay, Armando’s 24/7 caretaker.

I think there are a few reasons why this has happened.  The obvious is another form of the theme/message that always finds new ways to present itself to my family: DO NOT TAKE A SINGLE DAY FOR GRANTED. Before Armando even reached Pueblo (where he is recovering) he began making plans to make the most of his 3 month timeout from life as he knew it.  In addition to his music production equipment he asked for painting tools, an art set and an easel.  He took to painting like someone with years of experience.  There was no learning period, he just dove into it and began creating.  He has been filling his time between pain killer induced naps, with music and art.  He is bettering himself and he is making the most of each day despite his injury and his sadness.  Inspiring is an understatement.

Painting by Armando Garibay.

Painting by Armando Garibay.

Cool painting by Armando Garibay.

Cool painting by Armando Garibay.

2015 is different for all of us.  Armando finds himself relating much more than he ever wanted to the young, broken and defeated Professor Xavier that we are introduced to in X-Men: Days of Future Past (always X-Men analogies).  My aunt, the new homeowner is now playing the role of caretaker alongside my father, who is waist deep in the next phase of his business that seems to be expanding faster with each new day.  And me?  I’m not really sure where I am but I know that it is some sort of transitional state.  I’m motivated by my brother and father, I’m sad because at least 6 hours out of my day are being used ineficiantly and I am frustrated because there are days where I don’t know if I’m capable of digging deep enough to improve myself so that I can be who I want to and do the things that would really make a difference.

Armando is now working out of the room that used to be the original Blackout Beat recording studio, out of his fathers house.

Armando is now working out of the room that used to be the original Blackout Beat recording studio, out of his fathers house.

But somehow I am still digging.  Exhausted, I find myself pulling a little bit more out of myself than the day before.  Even though I should feel defeated at times, I don’t.  There is something different in the air this time.  I think it’s because of one of those other reasons why my brother’s accident happened:evolution.

He is evolving into something more and I feel like I am in the perfect space to do the same.  I’m reminded of that scene in the first Ninja Turtles movie (the best one) where the brothers spend some time to regroup on April’s farm.  They heal, catch their breath, get centered mentally and spiritually and sharpen their skills. They get to know each other and themselves better.  Not only that, but they spend time on lesser developed skills like drawing.  This sequence, which is one of my favorites, ends with the brothers becoming focused, stronger and working together as a team.  Maybe that could be one of the end results of this new status quo for the Garibay’s?

I think of my life as a series of story arcs that will one day equal to an epic adventure.  Right now it really does feel like the Ninja Turtles sequence I described above.  Having life in that frame helps to keep my attention where it should be.  So just as my brother picked up the paint brush, I’ve followed suit and begun taking up guitar in an effort to help my sound evolve. I’ve also been paying some attention to some of those underdeveloped skills too.  I’ve started taking the little sketches that I make students all day a bit more serious.  I’m working on technique and style, putting a little bit more into each portrait, My Little Pony, Spider-Man or Corvette sketch.  Something about is therapeutic to me and it takes me out of the insanity that is that school for a few moments.  When I see how much they mean to these kids it makes me want to do the next one better so they are worthy of the value these kids place on them.


Cyclops and Groot sketch I made for a Kindergartner.

Deadpool sketch I made for a student.

Deadpool sketch I made for a student.

I used today as an opportunity to take care of my physical and mental health, regain my peace, perspective and focus.  It was a day well spent and now with clear lungs and a clear head I can continue to make strides towards becoming a Marcos that will be equally as impressive as the new Armando, when we are back together as a new unstoppable team.


Frontin (cover) by Marcos & Mia B. from The Past is Prologue LP

29 Dec

Now that the box sets for Marcos Garibay’s album, The Past is Prologue have been out for a while The Blackout Beat has begun releasing the album digitally.

This is The Blackout Beat cover / homage of Pharrell Williams’ classic hit Frontin from The Clones album.  . This song features Mia B. and Marcos Garibay over a Latin Pop beat (produced by Marcos) that pays tribute to The Neptunes through drum and guitar chords.

“The Neptunes played a huge part in inspiring Armando and I. They are part of the reason we are producers now. I always wanted to do some sort of tribute to them as a way to say thank you. Doing this cover with Mia was such a fun experience because we got to put our own twist on something that’s meant a lot to me. I hope you all enjoy our Frontin with a latin twist!”

-Marcos Garibay

From more from The Blackout Beat and Marcos Garibay’s album, The Past is Prologue, be sure to check back here and at www.theblackoutbeat.com as well as FB: www.facebook.com/theblackoutbeat or twitter: www.twitter.com/theblackoutbeat

New Beats, New Songs in The Works

7 Dec

Marcos Diary Entry: 12.4.2014: Messiah Complex – My Experience Thus Far as an Artist and Educator

4 Dec
Most important lesson ever.

Most important lesson ever.

I though I had just been tired after not getting back into a normal sleep cycle after Thanksgiving break, but it’s now clear to me that I’m just emotionally worn out.  I am full of anger, anger over all the nationwide injustice at the hands of police.  I am not alone as countless others share my rage.  The problem is that I am not sure how to direct this energy.  I’m less faithful in peaceful protesting as I was prior to Ferguson.  Where did that get anyone the last 30 days?  I also do not want to be hasty and join the newest non minority supportive fad like the silly #alllivesmatter thing.  And like I said before, hashtags are not solutions.

My current political philosophy.

I spend the majority of time at a school Monday through Friday.  Today I realized that part of my frustration comes from the lack of conversation in respect to all of this. Nothing, teachers to students, students to students or even teacher to teacher.  As the only one who wants to talk about these things I’m left to feel like some kind of extremist. In my mind there could not be a more relevant thing to discuss, especially since the majority of our kids are likely to be profiled or to end up on the wrong side of the stick if they ever enter an altercation with an officer (statistically speaking since our student body is made up mostly of minorities).  Maybe people are afraid of rocking the boat, rustling feathers or whatever metaphor you like.  It’s never mattered to me when it comes to doing or saying what’s right and that’s why I’m glad it came up today amongst some kids.  It breaks my heart that these kids who already have it so hard are growing up in a world where we need another, more aggressive Civil Rights Movement.

In addition to the before mentioned, I’ve also been drowning under a sea of stories and moments that give me more insight into the lives my students live when they leave the school.  I used to think that loosing my mother at 14 after watching her die in my arms was as rough as it could get.  I was insanely wrong. Today I feel like young Xavier in Days of Future Past, more so than I have lately. (Everything can be an X-Men analogy to me).  Worn, beaten, a shell of a man who never lived up to his own expectations and a man haunted by all the thoughts and pain he feels when he uses his abilities.  I can’t read their minds or hear their thoughts but I can see and feel their pain, always hearing their stories in my head.  They ricochet and repeat in my mind all day long. “Love them while they are here and let them go when you go home. We can only do so much.” That’s advice a teacher I respect told me.  It’s easier said than done.  The downside of being the one that everyone wants to talk to, play with,  hang out with and be taught by, is that the kids open themselves to you, exposing their fears, pain and venerabilities.  They trust me and they look up to me.

And who am I?  That’s one of the main questions that have been staring at me, right in the face for the last few months. That answer can change depending on how I’m looking at my life that day.  Currently, I feel as though I exist as a invisible artist who has not reached anywhere near his potential.  A struggling facade of a man who works a day job that keeps him impoverished.   The questions right next to that is,  “who do I want to be?”.  It’s like I’m Logan / Wolverine in a place I don’t really feel that I fit in, belong or a place I’m not sure I want to be an extended period of time.  In my own mind, my life is a complex hive, full of departments that represent things that make me happy.  The problem is that I haven’t found a way to connect all or some of these things to create some sort of clear and tangible life that allows me to do and be exactly what I want to.  So by no means do I have things “figured out” or “together”. Perhaps these kids see something in me that I can’t see in myself?  I’m not sure, but I know that working with them has changed me.

I do not want to be a career teacher.  Let me just get that out of the way before I go on.  My heart is still in music, still in art.  I have been changed by these kids in that, I am always remind that there are fights bigger than me, struggles harder than my own, stories worse than my darkest and  that there is an infinite number of little people who are in need of motivation, inspiration and love, way more than I ever am, have been or ever will be.  So as The Blackout Beat continues to evolve, grow and in some ways simplify, I know that it has to involve some element that caters to the young underdogs and the future Marcos and Armando’s.

It’s my damn messiah complex that I have to put into check right now though.  I’m sure things will make more sense as the fog that clutters my mind and life clears up down the line.  But right now,  I want to fix everything for everyone in one fail swoop.  End racial inequality, find those Mexican students, avenge their deaths, fix every broken home for every student I work with,  inspire them all to live up to their potential, and then fix my own life, my own career so that I may be so busy with projects I love, so happy, that I’ll never have time to even consider that I may or may not be doing what I want to.  I can’t do this though.  I probably can’t even do anything on that list but the last one.  But my mind doesn’t allow me to think that way.  It sees everything as a possibility.  It really is a double edged sword.  It’s one thing to fail when you never really believed in yourself but it’s an entirely different thing when you fail and believe with all your heart and soul that you are capable.

The funny thing about my experience as a teacher is that I sometimes feel as though I’m the one there to learn.  I’ve learned a lot about strength in the face of terrible odds.  I’ve also learned that the ability to dream as big as I did (still do) is something that is becoming a rarity.  I’ve learned that when you do see that spark in someone’s eyes, it’s your duty as a human to focus on it, nurture it like it’s your own passion.  I also learned that the definition of success is a very different thing to children.  This is crazy to me because I had to redefined it for myself after starting Blackout over 10 years ago.  But that is redefining it as young adult and then later as an older young adult, (er… I mean adult).  But, the child definition is what I am still processing.  I have a car, I can dance, draw, I play and make music, have a studio, a log, a CD, I’m on Youtube, etc.  Those are things that make me just like Pharrell, Ginuwine, Justin or Timbaland to these kids (those are the people I aspire to be like in terms of career noteriety).

So as I plow forward, always moving towards a dream that is both vivid and invisible, in pursuit of becoming the most self actualized version of Marcos there can be, I will take comfort in the fact that I am already the kind of person that is worthy of all the hugs, high fives, secret handshakes and comments like “I wanna be like you Mr. Marcos when I grow up.”


Marcos Garibay: Producer, song writer, dancer, educator, X-Man and 30 year old big kid.

Marcos Garibay: Producer, song writer, dancer, educator, X-Man and 30 year old big kid.

Blackout Beat Anthology Infographic Poster!

1 Oct

Here is the famous info graphic poster that is included with The Past is Prologue Album Time Capsule Box Set!  This cool info graphic outlines the entire Blackout Beat history, important projects as well as many of the ups and downs that make Armando and Marcos’ story so interesting!

-TBBAnthology Poster 11x17

Wave 2 of Past is Prologue Time Capsule Box Sets are Here!! Order Yours Today!

30 Sep

After a long wait the second wave of Time Capsule Box Sets for Marcos Garibay’s album The Past is Prologue are now shipping!  Like the first wave, they will be going fast so be sure to order yours today!  You can order your album box set at http://www.theblackoutbeat.com/tpip.html  

And just in case you missed out on the madness that took place during the album release for The Past is Prologue, we have some more info on the box sets and the album bellow.


The Past is Prologue is the first solo effort from Blackout Beat Production Company producer and song writer Marcos Garibay. Important moments in time are colorfully painted on a Latin canvas that incorporates elements of Merengue, Bachata, Flamenco, Kizumba, 3Ball, and Dance Hall, over percussion foundations that draw inspiration from Timbaland and The Neputunes. Marcos assembled a unique and extremely talented group of musicians to help bring his vision to life: his brother Armando Garibay (the other half of The Blackout Beat) and his band The Circus House, Jillian Grutta, Felicia Gallegos Pettis, Lara Gallegos, Mia B., Emmett Arthur Collins III, and James Hurtado. The album explores the past, present and future while exposing a mainstream audience to a new fusion sound that carries The Blackout Beat’s signature. The Past is Prologue will be released as a special box set on June 28th, 2014.


The Past is Prologue Time Capsule Box Set

When you purchase The Past is Prologue Time CapsuleBox Set you get much more than the album.  Each hand assembled and uniquely numbered package contains the following in addition to a few surprises: The Past is Prologue CD, welcome letter, original lyrics, deluxe extra sized CD companion book, Blackout Anthology infographic poster, photo cards, Blackout Beat magnet, Circus House teaser, time capsule carrying case, preview of Marcos’ upcoming book and more!

And here is one of the songs from the album: Click, Click, Glow featuring The Circus House and A’Dula

Click, Click, Glow is the first single from Blackout Beat producer, song writer and artist Marcos Garibay’s album, The Past is Prologue. The Circus House (Denver’s popular Electro Pop Band) and Denver Hip Hop heavy weight A’Dula are also featured on the track.

and here is the music video for the Dance Intermission Remix.


Marcos to Teach After School Dance Club. Here are The Details.

29 Sep

Starting next Monday Marcos Garibay will be teaching his Blackout Beat Dance Club at a Commerce City elementary school, where Marcos also teaches reading to Kindergarden, 1st and 4th grade.  The class (which will take place after school, twice a week) will include a guided meditation, stretch, line dance warm up (think Cupid Shuffle) and then choreography. The club will tackle a new song chosen by Marcos and the students each week.   “As someone who grew up as a dancer in my family dance group and someone in the unique position of seeing how hard some of these young kids really have it, I can say that this is something we need.  Kids need things to pour themselves into, something that can be their escape from their own reality.  It’s my hope that I can provide this with my class.”   Said Marcos Garibay about his Blackout Beat Dance Club.


“Working on stuff for my first after school dance club that starts next week. These cool kids are gonna get very familiar with my favorite song off the new MJ record.”

As if the above description was not enough, Marcos will also be expanding the musical palate of his students at the end of each class.  “Before we end the class, as the kids drink their drinks and snack on their snacks, I will introduce them to a new genre of music or a new artists they would not typically be exposed to.  I’ve been lucky enough to grow up around all sorts of different music.  I think it has done a lot to help me creatively as a producer, song writer and artist.  I want to introduce these kids to Salsa, Bachata, Flamenco, Swing, Funk, and artist and song writers I admire.  It might also be a cool way to introduce them to new up and coming groups like the Circus House and The Past is Prologue (laughing).  ”  Said Marcos Garibay.


The Past is Prologue Album Release Party – July, 25th

11 Jul

If you are in the Denver area on the 25th be sure to stop by for a great evening of music as we celebrate the release of Marcos’ long awaited album, The Past is Prologue. PARTY

Front Cover for Marcos’ Past is Prologue Revealed!

8 Jul

Here is the final piece of artwork for Marcos’ album, The Past is Prologue.  The album’s official release date is July 25th.  Preorder information should be available in the next week!