Artist Catalog


Tristeza (Spanish and Portuguese for 'sadness') is a primarily instrumental band. The band is based in California, with most members currently living in Oakland. Although the group formed in San Diego during 1997, no current members reside there. The band has performed in 19 countries.

The original line up included Christopher Sprague, Luis Hermosillo, James LaValle (also known as Jimmy LaValle), James Lehner, and Stephen Swesey. This line-up recorded all material that was released through 2003, including the albums "Spine and Sensory (1999)" and "Dream Signals in Full Circles (2000)"

In January 2003, Tristeza played its last concert with Jimmy LaValle as a main member, although he has joined the band occasionally since then to fill in on guitar and additional keys.

During 2004, Tristeza enlisted guitarist Alison Ables and keyboardist Sean Ogilvie to begin writing songs for "A Colores (2005)". This line-up recorded all material that was released during 2005-2006.

At the start of 2007, the core of Tristeza (Sprague, Lehner, and Hermosillo) with the assistance of Ogilvie, began collaborating with various musicians around the Bay Area, including Camaron Stephens on guitar, and released the scarce/disjointed/lo-fi "Fate Unfolds (2009)" mini album.

In 2010, Tristeza recorded their latest album "Paisajes (2010)" with Tim Green, who recorded the band's first album. "Paisajes" features the band's current line-up of Christopher Sprague (guitar), Luis Hermosillo (bass), James Lehner (drums), Camaron Stephens (guitar),Chris Hash (keys),and Josh Lindenfelzer (trumpet/drums/percussion).