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Musicians’ union official links noise crackdown with cranky expats

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A Santa Ana home, owned by a Mexican citizen, protests excessive noise from newly built nightclubs. Photo: Lee Steele

Mérida, Yucatán — Foreigners who don’t like hearing music blaring from a nightclub in their neighborhood should return to their home country, said Miguel Ángel Martínez Ancona, general secretary of a musicians’ union.

Miguel Ángel Martínez Ancona, secretary general of the Sindicato de Filarmónicos de Yucatán “Víctor Cervera Pacheco,” asked the city to resolve long-standing conflict between residents and bar owners.

He told a reporter that the campaign against excessive noise is run by unreasonable expats who haven’t adapted to the local culture.

“Music does not generate noise, it creates harmonies. Those who complain are foreign people and we do not know why they do that. Music has always been there. That’s why we tell foreigners if they do not like what they do here, to return to their country,” said Martínez Ancona.

A March press conference dispelled the notion that only foreigners are protesting after-hours noise. Local residents and hotel owners told reporters that their families and businesses are being harmed by nightclubs that opened up only recently.

Residents have also emphasized that they do not expect utter silence in the Centro, but they insist that the after-hours antics of several nightclubs and their patrons is illegal and inconsiderate.

Martínez Ancona also implored the city not to ban live music in restaurants, bars and cantinas in the Centro Histórico. City regulations under review would halt live performances after 11:30 p.m., and contain any music inside soundproofed rooms.

Bands and deejays today often perform in open-air courtyards, with electronic music spilling into neighboring bedrooms until 3 or 4 in the morning.

“So what we ask that the work of musicians be respected, that we be taken into account because until now nobody has approached us to know our opinion on this subject,” the union leader said.

The musician, founder of the band Grupo Censurado (Censored Group), warned he would hold demonstrations at the Palacio Municipal if authorities privilege foreigners over working musicians and singers.

“We are here to ensure the well being of the musicians and that is what we are going to do. We will not allow ourselves to be affected by the complaint of a few foreigners,” he said.

Source: Reporteros Hoy

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