Back to top


Transforming Sights, Sounds, and History in the Los Angeles Latina/o Rockabilly Scene

An engrossing deep dive into the sights, sounds, and sensibilities of the Latina/o Rockabilly scene in Los Angeles, its ties to working-class communities, and its dissemination through the post-NAFTA global landscape.

July 2021
Not yet published
Add to cart

Available for pre-order.
This book will be available in June 2021.
Subscribe to be notified of availability.
224 pages | 6 x 9 |

Vocals tinged with pain and desperation. The deep thuds of an upright bass. Women with short bangs and men in cuffed jeans. These elements and others are the unmistakable signatures of rockabilly, a musical genre normally associated with white male musicians of the 1950s. But in Los Angeles today, rockabilly's primary producers and consumers are Latinos and Latinas. Why are these "Razabillies" partaking in a visibly "un-Latino" subculture that's thought of as a white person's fixation everywhere else?

As a Los Angeles Rockabilly insider, Nicholas F. Centino is the right person to answer this question. Pairing a decade of participant observation with interviews and historical research, Centino explores the reasons behind a Rockabilly renaissance in 1990s Los Angeles and demonstrates how, as a form of working-class leisure, this scene provides Razabillies with spaces of respite and conviviality within the alienating landscape of the urban metropolis. A nuanced account revealing how and why Los Angeles Latinas/os have turned to and transformed the music and aesthetic style of 1950s rockabilly, Razabilly offers rare insight into this musical subculture, its place in rock and roll history, and its passionate practitioners.

  • Acknowledgments
  • Terminology
  • Introduction
  • Chapter 1. From London to East Los: A Cultural History of the International Rockabilly Scene
  • Chapter 2. C’mon Baby, Let the Good Times Roll! Sites of Leisure and Memory in the Formation of the Chicana/o and Latina/o Rockabilly Scene of Greater Los Angeles
  • Chapter 3. Fashioning Razabilly Bodies: Embodied Style and Stance in the Chicana/o and Latina/o Rockabilly Scene of Greater Los Angeles
  • Chapter 4: Your Roots Are Showing: Tracing Genealogies and Building Cultural Memory through the Malleable Canon of the Greater Los Angeles Rockabilly Scene
  • Epilogue
  • Appendix. Research Sites
  • Notes
  • Bibliography

Nicholas F. Centino is an assistant professor of Chicana/o studies at California State University Channel Islands.


Available for Kindle
Available on Google Play
Available on Kobo
Available for Nook
Available on the Apple Store

This book may also be available on the following library platforms; check with your local library: