La Junta began early 2004 with a sound combining various musical styles. Influenced by so many genres, including jazz, blues, rock, reggae, Latin and hip-hop, every song is significantly different from the next. Attempting to blend each sound, we believe we have found something very refreshing in a world of cardboard cutouts. With our unique style as a backdrop, we reflect what we observe in our everyday lives as well as represent who we are and where we come from in a positive way.
Nick Pena (Acoustic/Electric guitar-lead vocals) began teaching himself to play and write songs in 2001 after being inspired by neighbor Tim Reynolds.
Around that same time an elementary school friend, Aaron Lamb (Drums/backup vocals) would begin to sit in to complete what was the beginning of La Junta. Shortly after, Matt Ojinaga was introduced to the group and by late 2003 La Junta was born.
Since then we have made two additions: Danny "Corazon" Hart (Auxiliary Percussion/backup vocals), who brings to the group his love of music and enthusiasm, and Sam Atkinson (Alto/Tenor Saxaphone), who adds musical talent, background and knowledge that would make Coltrane proud. Together we create a sound fusing Reggae, Latin, Rock, Blues, and Hip-Hop - music with poetic and thought provoking lyrics delivered in English and a bit of Spanish rhyme.
In May of 2009 La Junta was nominated their first time in for 2 New Mexico Music Awards, one for best blues song and another for best hispanic contemporary where they took home the award for best Hispanic contemporary song. A couple weeks later the group released their 3rd studio production entitled "Slangin Dirt". A collection of songs that rivals the best the band has done to date. "Slangin Dirt" was nominated for 8 NM-MIC awards in 2010, including album of the year. Our latest release "Always Live" was nominated for 3 NM-MIC awards this passed year 2011 and was the only live album nominated this year.
Currently we are in the studio working on our new record while still maintaining a regular gig schedule. We hope to have our 6th album out before the end of 2011!