BEST LIVE MUSIC IN OMAHA
Marcos Eduardo Mora Barrientos, a third generation Mexican American, was born in Los Angeles, CA and raised in South Omaha, NE. He comes from one of the largest Mexican American families in Omaha—la familia Barrientos that has contributed to the Omaha music scene for 90 years! Mora is a graduate of the Goodrich Program at the University of Nebraska at Omaha with a Bachelor’s Degree in Spanish and a minor in Chicano Latino Studies. As a pillar in the Latino community, Mora has become one of the most recognized leaders for his family’s contribution in the arts.
Mora graduated from South High School and eventually attended the University of Nebraska at Omaha where he introduced Nebraska’s first Spanish Yellow Pages and bilingual newspaper, El Perico. From there Mora pioneered the Latino market with his publications and went on to consult other medias and companies that needed assistance in understanding the Latino market.
Mora’s grandfather Vidal Barrientos and his brothers, Juan and Epifano, migrated to the United States from Aguascalientes, Mexico in the 1920s. From the 1920s to the1970s they were well-known musicians in the South Omaha Mexican community.
Mora is also an accomplished musician with over 30 years of experience in many genres of music such as Rock, Blues, Latin and Mariachi. He plays the guitar, bass, vihuela, mandolin, guitarron and various percussion instruments. When Mora entered the world of arts, he started dancing baile folklorico at the age of seven. He went on to dance for many years in the Omaha community but found himself playing trumpet at the age of ten and eventually the guitar as a teenager. On the guitar, Mora was a self-taught musician for the ﬁrst part of his career. In the nineties he ultimately found his way to study with seasoned blues and jazz musicians out of Kansas City and Chicago. This study would set the foundation for Mora’s music for years to come. Mora listened to mariachi all his life eventually using this passion to go on to form Nebraska’s first female mariachi, Las Palomas, and Nebraska’s largest mariachi group in history—Mariachi Luna y Sol.
For over a decade Mora taught students to play mariachi music but now is going back to his passion of electric guitar to play with Rockology, One Como Va - Santana Tribute and his Latin band Marcos & Sabor. Sabor plays a variety of Latin music from various Latin American countries that includes Santana, Cumbia, Oldies, Latin Jazz, Ballads, and much more. His most recent project is a documentary about what Latino musicians have contributed to the Omaha fabric of life.
Marcos’ Mariachi Luna y Sol won the Omaha Entertainment Awards Best Live Ethnic Group in 2007 and assisted Mannheim Steamroller at the Qwest concert in December of 2007. In 2008, he performed for former President of Mexico Vicente Fox and his wife, Martha Fox. In 2009, he rocked the stage at the Holland Performing Arts Center for the 3rd Annual Omaha Entertainment Awards as one of the main performers. In 2010, he performed at the Taste of Omaha and Omaha Jazz & Blues Festival.
In 2011, the Omaha Musician’s Association selected Mora to be one of the local talents to represent Omaha’s chapter of the American Federation of Musicians. Omaha is proud to have Mora in a Federation with some of the most famous names in music of all time, such as B.B. King and Carlos Santana.
In 2012, the State of Nebraska and the Latino Commission recognized Mora for his contributions to arts by having Governor Dave Heineman present him and student with an award for outstanding achievement.
In 2019, Marcos was featured for the third time at Omaha’s Jazz on the Green to play some 10,000 spectators.
Amongst Mora’s numerous activities he continues to support his church and community. He serves as a member of the South Omaha Arts Institute, Barrientos Scholarship Foundation, Cinco de Mayo Omaha, Fiestas Patrias Omaha and the Business Improvement Development in South Omaha.
For 10 years, Marcos volunteered and taught mariachi to kids from 8 to 17 years old from 2000 to 2010. The students learned the traditional fold art of mariachi and performed for local events.
Marcos would take Mariachi Luna y Sol and Sabor to schools to colleges to perform mariachi and Latin music during Cinco de Mayo and Latino Heritage Month. He also conducted a number of after-school and workshop programs.
One of Marcos' student wrote an essay and both were recognized for their contribution to the arts in mariachi across the State of Nebraska