Colorado musician and composer Antonio Lopez released “Going to the City” on November 12th with a premiere in Taste Culture, citing Lopez’s songwriting skills as “us[ing] his power of capturing humanity in a package that is multi-layered.” The song is a precursor to his Roots and Wings album releasing January 1, 2021. In the single, Lopez bears witness to the mass urbanization of the planet and mourns the loss of wild places and biodiversity. “Going to the City” chronicles the migration of Lopez from rural southern Colorado to the more populated metro area of the state so that he could pursue a career in music.
Listeners will note many strategies to communicate the underlying message in the song. The line “To grow further from nature is the nature of the man” repeats itself throughout the bridge. With each repetition, the music becomes increasingly dense and dark. Lopez infuses word-painting, one of his favourite musical techniques, in which the music reflects the literal meaning of the lyrics. To counteract the dissonance, a women’s chorus enters in slowly; growing in power and in number. This represents his belief that much of the world’s problems stem from an imbalance between male and female energies.
Ultimately, the message is one of hope. Lopez says, “It is natural for humans to gather, share ideas, and work together. In this lifetime, we will be facing our greatest challenges yet. If we work together and not apart, we have the ingenuity to overcome these obstacles. In the process, we can transform society aiding in the flourishing of both humanity and nature.”
Antonio Lopez is a musician, composer, and the executive director of the nonprofit, Sound Bridge Music. He is a quiet man who has something to say. His music is like an onion. It has many layers, each one revealing something more. At the core, Lopez is a singer-songwriter in service to the song. His adept guitar work and composition skills are never used in a showy way, but rather like the spices in a delectable home-cooked meal. The result is a feast of emotions that is a delight to the listener.
Lopez was born and raised in Alamosa, CO, growing up steeped in the Chicano culture of northern New Mexico and southern Colorado. Since 2012 Lopez has been living in Longmont, CO. Speaking of the move he says “ I was green as they come when I first arrived on The Front Range, full of that naive small-town optimism. The first job I had was as a night janitor in the public schools, trying to hustle my first gigs in a new music scene.” That hustle ethic has paid off as evidenced by Antonio’s newest album, Roots and Wings, which was crowdfunded through a wildly successful Kickstarter campaign.
The concept for Roots and Wings was planted in the late summer of 2018 as Antonio and his wife Georgia were flying back from their honeymoon on Vancouver Island in Canada. While there, Lopez picked up a free newspaper called The New Agora with an article about stepping into this new form of masculinity and fatherhood with a quote from Goethe that hit him in the gut… “There are only two lasting bequests we can hope to give our children, one of these is roots, the other, wings”. He read these words in the airplane, flying miles above the ground. Tearing up, Lopez reminisced on his childhood and all the sacrifices his parents made in order for him to have a better life than they had.