Best of 2003: Best Latin Music Evening

Monday nights at the Westgate Hotel Bar
1055 Second Avenue, Downtown

Guitarist Julio de la Huerta was approached by the general manager of the Westgate Hotel. "He said, 'We'd like to have you come play here, but the only night that we don't have music is Monday night. In fact, the bar isn't even open on Monday.' Now, Monday is the only night that you can't find a seat in the bar if you come after eight." Julio, often accompanied by guitarists Ramon Leyba and Ele Lombrozo, plays from 8:30 to 11:30 p.m. Latin expatriates from Argentina to Mexico -- and non-Latinos -- crowd into the small, high-ceilinged room to hear Julio and friends play and accompany the singers who come and perform. "We call it Noche Latina," de la Huerta says, "but we get people that sing in German, French, Russian, Portuguese, and Italian, as well as English and Spanish."

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