DannyLux would run to the door every time he’d hear his dad get home from work. As a sanitation driver in the Coachella Valley area, “he would always find things and bring them home,” the 19-year-old singer-songwriter remembers. “He would find pans for my mom, or furniture that was completely new. And he would randomly find toys. He got home one day and I just see a guitar case in his hand and I’m like, ‘no way did he just find a guitar.’ He gave it to me and I immediately wanted to learn to play.”

That was 12 years ago. Since then, DannyLux — who is part of a new generation of rising Mexican artists — has only honed his guitar-playing skills, after “begging” his mom to put him in guitar classes. Instead, she put him in the church choir and that’s where he learned to play “the basics.” The first song he ever learned to play was “Let It Be” by The Beatles. “My mom literally has a video of me singing it as a kid — I was like seven years old, and I have a huge guitar with my hand barely going over it,” the “Te Fallé” singer says.

It wasn’t until high school that he discovered Mexican music and his knack for songwriting. “I got kicked out of the school soccer team because of my grades,” he recalls. “It happened around when the pandemic started, so I would just go on TikTok and I’d hear a lot of Mexican songs and think, ‘These songs are sick, they sound so romantic.’ I decided to stick to music. I wasn’t the best at school and I wouldn’t get the best grades, so I wanted to at least do something right.”

In 2021, he hit No. 1 on Billboard‘s Latin Songwriters chart thanks to “Jugaste Y Sufrí,” his collab with Eslabon Armado. Last year, Warner Music Latina signed DannyLux in a partnership with his indie label VPS Music. He’s set to make his Coachella debut on April 14 — a homecoming for the singer-songwriter, since he grew up in that area. Now, he’s also part of the 2023 Fender Next class, an artist development program designed to elevate rising musicians that are pushing guitar forward in music, alongside other emerging artists such as Yahritza Y Su Esencia,

“It’s crazy, because the next guitar that I got, after the first one that my dad found, was an acoustic Fender guitar one for beginners,” he says. “That’s the guitar that I mainly used to learn everything. I would take it to school and just randomly play for my friends. Honestly, it’s crazy to be part of the Fender Next program — it’s a blessing.”

According to Fender, in the last two years, 38% of 16 million new guitar players identify as Latin, “emphasizing the need for Fender and the industry at large to support and ensure players from all backgrounds have a barrier-free experience in learning guitar.” (The company also found that 58% of beginners use TikTok weekly or more frequently.)

Yahritza y Su Esencia broke out last year after they went viral on TikTok. Their debut single, “Soy El Único” debuted at No. 20 on the Billboard Hot 100, making Yahritza Martinez — the trio’s lead singer — ​​the youngest Latin performer to enter the all-genre tally at 15 years old.

The sibling trio — a best new artist nominee at the 2022 Latin Grammys — is also part of the Fender Next program. “When I play my guitar, I am able to dream out loud,” Yahritza says in a statement. “I drift into a space that is just me, my guitar and my thoughts and it is a big part of how I roll these ideas out, when writing music.”

“Playing my bass has always helped me relax and helps keep my mind busy especially in tough times,” says bass player Jairo Martinez. “It inspires me to create new music and reminds me of how blessed I am to be talented enough to play such a beautiful instrument.”

The trio’s guitarist and songwriter, Armando Martinez, adds: “My guitar just makes me feel complete when I play it, like my best friend that I carry with me almost everywhere I go, especially on this incredible new journey as artists we are on! It’s also important to me because it’s gotten me through many hard times when I didn’t have anything else in life to look forward to. Learning new things on my instrument is really magic for me.”

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