"It's really important to me that no one is dehumanized based off the color of their skin or their ethnicity," said Kali Uchis. “When we do events like these, we make people realize how much control we actually have and how much strength you have together.”
When the current U.S. administration came out with its anti-immigration policies in 2017, Doris Muñoz, who is the only U.S. citizen in her family, started worrying about her parents, who were undocumented. Her older brother had been deported to Mexico in 2015, so to prevent that from happening to her mother and father, she organized a concert to raise money for their legal fees. Two years later, the Solidarity for Sanctuary concerts are still going strong, and have raised more than $14,000 for undocumented immigrants; last year’s NYC concert attracted 4,000 attendees.
This year’s concert in NYC’s Central Park was a celebration of the late Tejana icon Selena, and supported the organization Make the the Road New York. Despite a thunderstorm that almost ended Sunday’s show, the concert was a loving, exciting tribute to Selena, whose music is still beloved by the Latinx community. Performers included Kali Uchis, IV Jay, La Doña, Cuco, Helado Negro, Jasper Bones and Ambar Lucid, as well as Selena’s widow, Chris Pérez, and her nephew Principe Q.
“With this concert, what we really wanted to do is raise not only awareness but obviously money for Make the Road New York, and empower everyone with a sense of community,” Kali Uchis told People CHICA. “[It’s about] celebrating the power of oneness and how together with that strength, we can actually make a difference. … It’s really important to me that no one is dehumanized based off the color of their skin or their ethnicity. When we do events like these, we make people realize how much control we actually have and how much strength you have together.”
Many attendees wore Selena-inspired attire, and the performers covered some of the late singer’s hits. “I just want people to really remember her and everything she’s done,” IV Jay said. “I’m hoping this concert really does prove that she’s still amazing.” Judging by the reaction of the crowd, who applauded and cheered all evening, it did.