The director and frontman of a band was shot and killed early yesterday morning in Guanajuato apparently because the band refused to play a song requested during a performance.
According to several witness accounts, including those by members of the Banda Tierra Mojada, an individual asked the band to play a particular song, but the musicians refused to do so, triggering a violent response.
Band members were physically assaulted and gunshots were fired, but the party continued regardless.
Some minutes after midnight, however, band members were accosted while packing their instruments and preparing to leave the venue, located in the town of La Labor de Valtierra, in the municipality of Salamanca.
A group of armed men approached the bus and began arguing with the musicians. Virgilio Ruiz García, 41, was killed during the gunfire that followed.
The victim was transferred to the Valle de Santiago General Hospital where he died a few hours later.
Band members said their attackers boarded the bus and stole cash, musical instruments and phones.
Most of the members are from the Oaxaca municipality of San Andrés Huayapam, where the band was formed in 1989. Described in one report as one of the best bands in southern Mexico, Tierra Mojada gave a concert with Oaxaca singer-songwriter Lila Downs at the Guelaguetza in Oaxaca last month.
Downs paid tribute to Ruiz on her Facebook page yesterday, concluding by saying, “This cannot still be happening in Mexico.”