20 Famous Musicians From New Mexico

New Mexico is not only rich in culture, but it has also produced some of the most talented  musicians in the world, spanning a diverse range of genres from Latin pop to Mexican music, jazz to rock.

From the iconic sounds of Al Hurricane, Jr. to the soulful vocals of Alissa Moreno and the chart-topping hits of Demi Lovato, New Mexico has proven to be a hotbed of musical talent.

Let’s delve into the 20 famous musicians from New Mexico and their lasting impact on the music industry:

1. John Denver

John Denver - Take Me Home, Country Roads (from The Wildlife Concert)John Denver – Take Me Home, Country Roads (from The Wildlife Concert)

John Denver was one of the most beloved country and folk musicians of the 1970s. His music, which draws inspiration from the scenic landscape of Colorado, has turned him into a highly-respected and adored musician.

Hits such as “Take Me Home, Country Roads” and “Rocky Mountain High” continue to be staples of the genre.

2. Demi Lovato

Demi Lovato - Stone Cold (Live In Studio)Demi Lovato – Stone Cold (Live In Studio)

Demi Lovato is a singer-songwriter and actress who rose to fame as a Disney Channel star before launching a successful music career, producing hits such as “Sorry Not Sorry” and “Heart Attack.” Lovato’s powerful voice and candid lyrics have made her one of the most popular pop stars in the industry.

With her fame in acting and singing, she has received plenty of recognition, including numerous nominations in the Grammy Awards, Billboard Music Award, and Brit Awards. Some of her well-loved songs are “Skyscraper,” “This Is Me,” and “Give Your Heart A Break.”

3. Alissa Moreno

Alissa Moreno- Every Day- Live at the 2010 Key West Songwriters' FestivalAlissa Moreno- Every Day- Live at the 2010 Key West Songwriters’ Festival

Alissa Moreno is a singer-songwriter. She gained fame for her soulful and emotive vocal style, as well as her ability to write compelling lyrics that touch on themes of love, loss, and redemption.

Moreno has released several albums over the course of her career, including “In Your Wake” and “Meet Again.” She has collaborated with a variety of other artists in the music industry, including Rascal Flatts, Colbie Caillat, and John Oates.

4. The Shins

The Shins - New Slang (Live On Letterman)The Shins – New Slang (Live On Letterman)

The Shins are an indie rock band. Their jangly, melodic sound and introspective lyrics have earned them a devoted fanbase. Hits such as “New Slang” and “Simple Song” are still beloved by indie rock fans around the world.Their musical style combines elements of folk and retro sounds.

5. Al Hurricane, Jr.

Al Hurricane Jr. - "Pideme La Luna" (en vivo)Al Hurricane Jr. – “Pideme La Luna” (en vivo)

Al Hurricane, Jr. is a musician and singer who comes from a family of prominent musicians in New Mexico. He is best known for carrying on the legacy of his father, the late Al Hurricane, who was widely regarded as the “Godfather of New Mexico Music.” 

Hurricane, Jr. has continued to play and record music in the same style as his father, which blends elements of traditional Spanish music with rock and roll, country, and other genres.

He has released several albums of his own, including “Flores De Las Flores” and has performed at venues and festivals throughout New Mexico and beyond.

6. Chevel Shepherd

Chevel Shepherd - The Letter (Official Music Video)Chevel Shepherd – The Letter (Official Music Video)

Chevel Shepherd is a country singer from Farmington, New Mexico, who rose to fame as the winner of “The Voice” Season 15 in 2018. She was just 16 years old at the time, making her one the youngest winners in the show.

Shepherd opened for Maroon 5’s tour in 2019 which showcased her musical talent. Some of her songs are “The Letter,” “Just Like The Circus,” “Southern Boy.”

7. Glen Campbell


Glen Campbell was a country music legend who is also an actor and guitarist. He had numerous hits over the course of his career, including “Rhinestone Cowboy,” “Universal Soldier,” and “Gentle on My Mind,” and has also sold over 45 million units worldwide.

Campbell has earned six Grammy Awards and other accolades, which makes him a renowned artist. 

8. Beirut

Beirut - Postcards From Italy | Haldern Pop Festival 2010Beirut – Postcards From Italy | Haldern Pop Festival 2010

Beirut is an indie folk band founded by singer-songwriter Zach Condon in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The band’s unique sound blends elements of Balkan folk music with indie rock and pop, resulting in a rich, eclectic sound that has won them a devoted fanbase.

Some of their tracks are “Postcards From Italy,” “A Sunday Smile,” and “Fountains and Tramways.”

9. Scared of Chaka

Scared of Chaka "December"Scared of Chaka “December”

Scared of Chaka was a punk rock band who were known for their energetic and fast-paced sound, which often mixed with garage and punk pop sound. Some of their albums are “Hutch Brown,” “How To Lose,” and “Scared of Chaka.” The band have also performed in multiple events and music festivals.

10. Red Earth

Sacred - Red EarthSacred – Red Earth

Red Earth is a rock band based in Albuquerque, New Mexico, recognized for their combination of customary drumming and singing with elements of jazz, heavy metal, and ska, creating a contemporary twist on Native American music. 

Red Earth has played at various events and festivals, and their album “When Worlds Collide” has earned them a Native American Music Award, contributing to the preservation and promotion of Native American culture.

11. Bob Scobey

Swanee River  - live.  Bob Scobey c.1958 with Clancy Hayes and Dave Black.Swanee River – live. Bob Scobey c.1958 with Clancy Hayes and Dave Black.

A jazz player known for his traditional sound, Bob Scobey has gained recognition for making his own band named Bob Scobey’s Frisco Band.

Through his jazz band, he was able to collaborate and record over two hundred tracks. He then went solo, which allowed him to join other bands and tour extensively.

12. Freddie Brown

Freddie Brown -  Borracho PerdidoFreddie Brown – Borracho Perdido

Freddie Brown was a singer-songwriter who effortlessly played Spanish and country music. He has released albums entitled “From: All Of Me,” “El Sensacional,” and “El Versatil.” His contributions in New Mexico music is evident, as he influenced his sons to also music.

13. The Fireballs

Jimmy Gilmer and the Fireballs, "Sugar Shack" live, Santa Fe, 2018Jimmy Gilmer and the Fireballs, “Sugar Shack” live, Santa Fe, 2018

The Fireballs are a rock and roll band formed in Raton, New Mexico. They had a string of hits in the early 1960s, including “Sugar Shack” and “Bottle of Wine,” which helped to establish them as one of the most successful rock and roll bands of the era. Some of their songs include “Bulldog,” and “Quite A Party.”

14. Ryan Bingham

Ryan Bingham - Hallelujah (Live on the Honda Stage)Ryan Bingham – Hallelujah (Live on the Honda Stage)

Ryan Bingham is a singer-songwriter and actor. He has released several critically acclaimed albums, including “Mescalito” and “Junky Star,” and won an Academy Award for Best Original Song for co-writing “The Weary Kind,” which was featured in the film “Crazy Heart.”

15. Sparx

SPARX - Cumbia Mix Vol. 1SPARX – Cumbia Mix Vol. 1

Sparx is a New Mexico-based band consisting of four sisters from the Sanchez family. The group blends traditional and modern music in Latin pop, Regional Mexican, and hip-hop styles.

They secured a victory in a songwriting competition with their track “Vamos a Jugar,” in which their brother, Lorenzo Antonio, participated. Sparx has been performing together for over 40 years and has become a beloved group in the Southwest.

16. Old Man Gloom

Old Man Gloom - To Carry the Flame (Live 2012)Old Man Gloom – To Carry the Flame (Live 2012)

Old Man Gloom is an extreme metal band from Santa Fe, New Mexico who are known for their heavy sound and unconventional approach to music. Some of the tracks that they released are “Radio Crackles Spill Down My Face,” “Breath Drops Out In Ice And Glass,” and “Cinders Of The Simian Psyche.”

With elements of sludge metal and post-hardcore, the band has gained a cult following for their innovative approach to metal. 

17. Randy Castillo

R.I.P - Randy Castillo - solo  Ozzy Osbourne  /band/R.I.P – Randy Castillo – solo Ozzy Osbourne /band/

Randy Castillo was a songwriter and drummer who played with several notable bands, including Ozzy Osbourne, Lita Ford, and Red Square Black. He was known for his energetic drumming style and his contributions to the heavy metal genre.

18. Deepsky

Deepsky - Let Me LiveDeepsky – Let Me Live

Deepsky is an electronic music duo from Albuquerque, New Mexico, consisting of J. Scott G. and Jason Blum. When J. Scott G. left Deepsky to pursue a solo career, Blum continued to play using Deepsky.

In the early 20’s, Deepsky went from making music to producing remixes for other artists and bands, such as David Bowie, Paul Oakenford, Madonna, and America.

19. Lorenzo Antonio

Lorenzo Antonio - "Ranchera Jam / Popurrí Ranchero" (Estilo Country)Lorenzo Antonio – “Ranchera Jam / Popurrí Ranchero” (Estilo Country)

Lorenzo Antonio is a singer-songwriter who is known for his contributions to the Mariachi, Latin pop, and Mexican pop music genres. He toured in various locations in Central America, Mexico, and South America and played his popular songs which are “Como Me Gustas,” “Buscare,” and “Vamos A Jugar.”

20. Brokencyde

Brokencyde - Bree Bree - Live on Fearless Music HDBrokencyde – Bree Bree – Live on Fearless Music HD

Brokencyde is a music group formed in 2006, consisting of members Se7en, Mikl, Phat J, and Antz. They are known for their blend of screamo and crunkcore music and have gained a significant following for their unique sound and style. Their popular albums are “I’m Not a Fan, But the Kids Like It!” and “Guilty Pleasure.”


The musicians of New Mexico have infused their heritage and cultural identity into their music, creating a unique sound that is distinct and memorable.

Whether it’s the fiery rhythms of salsa and merengue or the smooth melodies of jazz and blues, the music of New Mexico continues to inspire and captivate listeners with its rich cultural heritage and unique blend of styles. 

John Denver Featured Image (Top-Left) by: Kingkongphoto & www.celebrity-photos.com from Laurel Maryland, USA, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Demi Lovato Featured Image (Top-Right) by: Frank Schwichtenberg, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Alissa Moreno Featured Image (Bottom-Left) by: Justin Mayotte, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
The Shins Featured Image (Bottom-Right) by: Nan Palmero from San Antonio, TX, USA, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons