Noel Schajris of the group Sin Bandera is in the midst of the duo’s Una Última Vez tour which brings them back to the Rio Grande Valley nearly a year after their performance here in October.
The Argentine singer, along with his Sin Bandera partner Leonel Garcia, wrapped up performances in Canada earlier this month and is now in his home in Tepoztlán, a town in the Mexican state of Morelos.
Unfortunately, the city, located an hour and a half away from Mexico City, was one of the places affected by the 7.1 magnitude earthquake that struck on Sept. 19 and reportedly killed 337 people.
“It was terrible. It is really traumatic,” Schajris said in a phone interview. “My prayers are that there not be any more tremors for a good while because even if they are small, it’s so sensitive, there’s a lot of trauma.”
Schajris said he had just gotten back from Canada the morning of the earthquake and was glad to have been home and able to protect his children when it hit.
“I remain strangely calm in those situations, I don’t know why,” he said, “I can manage to be calm and to think clearly and to do what’s necessary so thank God I can be like that.”
Since then, he has gotten in touch with locals to discuss ways in which he could help in the recovery — a process he acknowledged could takes months or even a year.
“They’re my neighbors and my sister lives here, my nephews now — we’re going to help a lot here, in Morelos,” Schajris said. “It’s needed and people need it.”
Meanwhile, he and Garcia will continue on with the second phase of Sin Bandera’s tour which follows the release of their entirely acoustic album “Primera Fila Acústico: Una Última Vez - Encore” in February.
“It gives you a lot of liberty to improvise, to be naked — musically speaking — with the audience; it’s amazing,” he said of the acoustic performances. “People are enjoying it very much and it’s totally different from what people saw last year, that’s for sure.”
Last year, the Latin pop duo performed to a full house at Hidalgo’s State Farm Arena. The performance was part of the first phase of their tour which marked their reunion after disbanding in 2007.
They have about a year left on their tour which, Schajris said, is the band’s longest in the U.S. having already played about 13 concerts here with at least 27 more to go. Their next one will be performed on Sunday, Oct. 1 at H-E-B Park in Edinburg.
“All the shows in Texas always are very special,” he said. “The audiences in Texas are amazing so every show that we have there is a blast.”
Once their tour ends, Schajris said he and Garcia would each work on solo projects but that the door on Sin Bandera would remain open.
“We realize that it’s crazy to say ‘Goodbye!’ and then ‘Hello!’ and then ‘Goodbye!’” he said, adding that they would just see what happens. “Let’s not close the door to any beautiful, amazing project, let’s just enjoy.”