The old tower of the Mariachi Hotel, First and Boyle of East Los Angeles. Jimmy Ojotriste, Ray Chin and Vic Salcedo used a roof vent to make it their rehearsal space. Ray's apartment is just to the left.

The Music of Jimmy Ojotriste

INGRAM ISBN 978-0-9965594-2-3

AMAZON ISBN 978-0-9965594-0-9

Lunita Hispanic Press - Phoenix 2015


Jimmy survived a horrific crash in Tijuana. An eye-maker in the borderlands made him a beautiful but bewitched and heartsick glasseye. Along with Ray Chin and Victor Salcedo, the three boys are raised by a surrogate father as street musicians, and they work the boulevards of East Los Angeles. At twenty, Jimmy still walks with a sweeping drop-foot, keeps hair long to hide scars and is known as “Ojotriste,” the mariachi with one-sad-eye. He is in love with a dazzling, impossible flamenco dancer. Ray has bone cancer, is also in love, but refuses hospitals. Victor, handsome and practical, wants a new life. This will be their last year, and in Vic’s unfinished low-rider, the three boys cross the city, using music to make sense of sex and love, culture and belonging, faith and loss.

“Romantic in the biggest sense of the word.” Goodreads Review

"Anyone interested in Hispanic culture, mariachi and flamenco will be immersed.” Goodreads Review

Peace in the Streets: Breaking the Cycle of Gang Violence

ISBN 978-0878686926

Child Welfare League of America, Wash. DC 1998

The compelling, ture life story of gang life transformed on Indian reservations and in South Central Los Angeles—A practical guide to parents and communities. In the words of Luis Rodriguez, author of "Always Running: Gang Days in L.A."


     "A necessary read for anyone serious about personal transformation and peace in       our communities."


Currently out of print. However, the 3rd and final revision of Peace in the Streets will be released in late 2016 by Lunita Hispanic Press. Check this site and for updates

Peace in the Streets


Northwest Publishing, Salt Lake City, UT 1998

The original story of the one room school openned by two twenty year old musicians that took in thirty members of the Clanton Street and First Flats gangs, two of the oldest in Los Angeles. A true tale of lives both lost and restored.


Out of print but third and final revision will be released in late 2016.  Check this site and for updates