This month’s Author Spotlight is on Lucky Diaz, a prolific talent! He is a bilingual children’s book author and a Grammy- and Emmy-winning musician and television personality.
Lucky Diaz and Alisha Gaddis, his talented wife, make up Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band. If you haven’t heard their music, what are you waiting for?! They are so much fun that they have been featured in everything from New York Times to NPR to Billboard and New York Magazine. They’ve been called “Standout Indie-Tock for Kids” by CNN and NPR said their hooks will “…have you singing them for miles.”
Their music is amazing, but Lucky Diaz’s newest book, La Guitarrista, is a joy too! Have you read it yet?
It is all about a young girl who finds her first guitar in the trash and is ready to rock. Sure, the guitar is broken, but it’s nothing a little glue from Fernanda’s Furniture shop can’t fix! Once it’s mended, she is ready for lessons from Señora Clemente. But are the other kids ready for her and her repaired guitar?
This book is all about following your heart song and connecting to your community. With that, anything can happen!
Lucky Diaz even includes a note at the end of the book talking about his first guitar. He got it at a flea market and played happily until he saved up enough for his first Stratocaster. Now he is winning all kinds of musical awards and is part of a beloved family rock band! How cool is that?
La Guitarrista contains beautiful illustrations from the amazing illustrator Micah Player that really help to bring the lyrical, mixed-language words to life. I want to dive into this vibrant world on each page and jam out at the rock concert finale!
It’s so much fun, and incorporates a good bit of Spanish for beginning readers and language learners in both English and Spanish. There is also a glossary of all the Spanish words for non-Spanish speakers.
If you love the book and want more, check out the La Guitarrista song too. You don’t need to be a budding Guitarrista to want to sing and dance along!
In addition to the lyrical La Guitarrista, Lucky Diaz also wrote Paletero Man, along with more vibrant illustrations from Micah Player.
Another ode to community, this one is all about chasing down the Paletero Man in hopes of getting a favorite flavor. But what happens when your money falls out of your pocket along the way to finding Paletero José? A fun mixed-language book filled with kindness and friendship that is just right for the summer months, and ice pop eating days!
After reading Lucky Diaz’s books and having a dance party to his Family Jam Band music, you might want more mixed-language learning. Check out my Big Is Grande post that includes a mixed-language book video and a bilingual song for young children. You don’t need a guitar to sing this one!
In my house, we love Lucky Diaz and I hope that this author spotlight will have you dancing, singing, and reading along to him too!