El Dasa's charisma and humble ways have contributed to his early success. (Rafael Orellana/Living Out Loud LA)
In his native Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico, Dasahev López Saavedra grew up listening to Regional Mexican music. But, at the same time, he was fond of singers like José José, Camilo Sesto, and Raphael.
The now 22-year-old, better known as El Dasa in the music industry, moved to Los Angeles a few years back. He became a chauffeur for prominent artists like Vicente Fernández, who actually gave him a boost in the beginning of his career. On the night of November 17, 2011, Fernández invited El Dasa to share the Gibson Amphitheatre stage with him. They sang “Amor De Los Dos” together, and the packed venue loved the piece.
Since then, El Dasa’s career has flourished. El Dasa’s songs “Mentirosa” and “Por Ser Bonita” have captivated not only fans ears, but also the music charts. And he is now the opening act for Paquita La Del Barrio’s much-awaited show on Saturday, March 8 at Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE.
In an exclusive interview for Living Out Loud, El Dasa spoke about his musical influences, career, sharing the stage with Paquita La Del Barrio, and much more.
Living Out Loud: What were your musical influences growing up?
El Dasa: I’m from Sonora, in north of Mexico, and so we all grew up with music from the region. It’s been all hats and boots since I was a little kid. It’s something I have in my veins, not a gimmick or sudden passion. But I also grew up listening to José José, Camilo Sesto, Raphael, all those guys.
LOL: What’s the greatest satisfaction you have in your career right now?
ED: Being able to make a living doing something I love. For me, it’s a blessing to go out and perform, and have people clap for you and want to touch you, and take pictures with you – and on top of that, I get paid.
LOL: Where you are in your career, is it a dream come true, or the result of very hard work?
ED: I would say both, because I always dreamed it, but none of it would be possible without very hard work. I’ve gone non-stop, and I can tell you right now that everything I’m enjoying at the moment, I deserve. I’ve been very responsible, and made many sacrifices – none of it has been in vain.
LOL: What advice from Vicente Fernández has stuck with you the most?
ED: It’s not just his advice, but all the advice I’ve received from many in the industry, and one thing everyone tells me is to never change. I carry that with me at the back of my mind.
LOL: How do you feel about opening Saturday for Paquita La Del Barrio at Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE?
ED: She’s a national idol. Speaking her name is to begin a discussion about what regional Mexican music is. I’ve been to the Nokia Theatre as a fan many times, and now to be able to present my complete show with all of my musicians has us very excited.
LOL: Why should people go see this show?
ED: There are a lot of bad things happening in the world right now that might make us sad, so you can come see our show and distract yourselves, have a great time. The show has two generations onstage, and Paquita is a very entertaining woman. Her shows will make you laugh. The best part is that it’s an event the whole family can go to.
LOL: You’re very charismatic; who’d you get that from?
ED: My father, he taught me how to dance. Both my parents were very happy people.
LOL: You’re very kind and indulging with your fans – signing autographs and taking lots of pictures with them. Is that really you?
ED: Absolutely. I can’t really deny a picture because at one point, I was one of those fans who wanted one. That may change one day, especially since I take pictures and give autographs to everyone who wants it. Sometimes I’m there 2-3 hours after the show, and as my career grows I may not have time to do that. But it’s not like I’ll ever stop doing it, it’ll just be 40 minutes or so, not 2-3 hours.
LOL: What does fashion mean to you?
ED: I’m not a big fashionista. It’s almost like losing your essence. If you follow trends, you’re just one of the bunch.
LOL: What’s your take on social media?
ED: It’s very helpful. It’s been particularly helpful for me because it gives our fans insight as to how we really are. It humanizes us, and allows us to communicate with people on a deeper level. And our fans like that, they want access.
LOL: Where do you see yourself in the next 3-5 years?
ED: I don’t know. That’s a tough one. The main thing is to make sure people continue to like my work. I’ll take things as they come.
LOL: You now live in Los Angeles. What do you do with your spare time?
ED: I like going to the beach a lot, and walking. I also like going to the movies. One thing I don’t like is to be cooped up at home. Sometimes the traffic makes me not want to do certain things, but otherwise I like going out.
LOL: What was the last film you watched?
ED: En Busca de Felicidad, and oldie but a goodie.
Edison Millan contributed to this story.