Linda Ronstadt may have retired from singing, but she’s pretty busy. She and her friend Jackson Browne both star in a new documentary arriving next month called Linda and the Mockingbirds.
The doc features Ronstadt revisiting her Mexican roots, and she and Browne travel to Mexico by bus with the students of Los Cenzontles Cultural Arts Academy, of which Linda’s been a patron since the ’90s. “Cenzontle” means “mockingbird.” The group visits the town in the Mexican state of Sonora, where Linda’s grandfather grew up.
Linda hopes the documentary will strike a blow against anti-immigrant rhetoric.
“It will make people aware of what they’re discriminating against so vigorously,” she tells Rolling Stone.
“Anti-Mexican discrimination has been one of the main planks in the platform of Donald Trump,” Ronstadt notes. “It’s one of the things that got people energized.”
She adds, “It was like, ‘We aren’t going to let these people in here. They’ll get something for nothing and they’re going to take away our jobs.’ It’s a total myth that they impact the economy in a negative way. They’re actually adding to the economy tremendously.”
Linda and the Mockingbirds will be released digitally and on demand on October 20.
In addition to the documentary, Ronstadt plans to release some live archival performances, similar to last year’s Live in Hollywood, from 1980. Among the recordings are concerts she did in support of her standards albums What’s New, Lush Life and For Sentimental Reasons, and her Mexican album Canciones de Mi Padre.
“I don’t do any social media, but I was convinced this year to put up a website because we have found a lot of board mixes of old live performances,” she tells Rolling Stone. “We’re going to put a selection of those out.”
By Andrea Dresdale
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