Music: Romantic Guitars

Back in - oh - 1985 while in Laguna Beach for the Pageant of the Masters, my wife and I killed some time at the Sawdust Art Festival across the street. I've always had a weakness for the wet guitar sound, and the guitar duo Romantic Guitars (Ruben Nash Martinez, Ramiro Garcia) were playing to that weakness with a Flamenco flavor in the middle of the festival grounds, while family members sold prerecorded cassettes nearby. I picked up a copy of "Moonlight Romance" and "North American Western World", and put myself on their mail list. Back in the day, the MacPaint-based layout and LaserWriter-printed inserts were reasonably cutting edge for a garage band. This is about the same time that Mike Saenz published the first all digital comic book "Shatter", using the same tools.

I bought their third album when a mail announcement came out a year or two later, but the added orchestration didn't do anything for me. I've heard nothing from the band since.

I lost track of the tapes when we relocated to Hawaii in '99, but finally dug up two of the boxes during our '12 spring cleaning, one empty, one with tape. I immediately picked up a used deck, hauled out my Roland UA-1G, and dubbed the survivor to MP3. Ahhhh, acoustic bliss returns on my sound system.

You can't find these cassettes anywhere. I've found one other gentleman on-line who bought a twin of my missing tape from a street vendor in Santa Monica years back. Neither of us is in the habit of passing around copyrighted work. But, the band seems lost to the mists of time, so we made the trade. Given that these releases predate MP3 and cheap CD burners, we may have the only copies not in the landfill, or the band mates' living rooms.

Got any current contact info? I believe both Mr. Martinez and Mr. Garcia still live in the Inland Empire. I'd love to hear from them, and at least send them a check for the duplicated tapes. Click on the "Contact Us" menu button above.

Moonlight Romance
Moonlight Romance:
Recorded at Clay Franklin Studio
Costa Mesa, Ca - June 1985
Engineered by Anthony Sabga
Ruben Nash Martinez and Ramiro Garcia
Acoustic & Electric Guitars, Computer Drum
Tracks, Side A:
Human Beings
Mother's Love
Tribute To Wes Montgomery
Romantic Guitars
Laguna Sunset
Full Moon
My California Heart
Western Love Song
Side B:
Sandpiper
Indian Paradise
Cowboy Dance
Twilight
Venice Romance

North American Western World
North American Western World:
Recorded at Clay Franklin Studio
Costa Mesa, Ca - June 1985
Engineered by Anthony Sabga
Ruben Nash Martinez and Ramiro Garcia
Acoustic & Electric Guitars, Computer Drum
Produced by Patsy Ann Martinez
Special thanks to: Phyco Audio - Montclair, Ca and the Guitar Store, Pomona, Ca
Graphics by Rick Thomas
Tracks, Side A:
Boots & Spurs
El Matador
21st Century Blues
North American
Space Frontier
Shooting Star
Side B:
Funky Western
B Minor Song
Light Years Away
Flamenco Tears
Tango in Spain
Ramona