This group has been around since 2007 but–as with most worthwhile endeavors–took some time to build up some stream, noting small but notable successes along the way. They caught the attention of Spin magazine at the beginning of the year and made a big splash at the latest SXSW Music Festival in Austin this past month. The band is led by Alynda Lee Segarra, a Bronx native of Puerto Rican descent who left home at the age of 17 and settled in New Orleans. Hearing her story alone caught my attention. Then I heard the music. It is folk, country, roots music. It is music from the heart and it is no surprise that Ms. Segarra’s journey took her to New Orleans, the city where the soul of America resides: beaten, abused, milked, and exploited but refusing to die, to lay down, to quit. This is America. This is who we are and where we came from. We are the mutts of the world, the ones no one wanted, the runts of the litter, the downtrodden and the poor, the cast offs, the survivors, the melting pot, (who if you cross us are a little dangerous), and we’ll not be defeated.