Children and Youth

City designates June 5 as ‘Joe Fata Day’

11-year-old appeared on TV show "La Voz Kids," making it to the second battle round

Local 11-year-old singer Joe Fata, whose televised attempts to earn a recording contract and scholarship by competing on the singing show "La Voz Kids," was honored on June 1 by the Hollister City Council, which designated Friday, June 5 as "Joe Fata Day" in the city.

Mayor Ignacio Velazquez presented a certificate of congratulations to Fata, who was eliminated during the second battle round of the show on an episode that aired in May. "I love this guy," Velazquez said as he presented the award, adding that his own children wanted to learn to play an instrument after hearing Fata play. "You're already a star at your show," Velazquez said. "What's impressive about Joe, he's a mariachi singer but he didn't grow up speaking Spanish — but he does now."

Fata, a Hollister resident, previously told BenitoLink that even though he did not win the television competition, "the overall experience was amazing." He said working with Pedro Fernandez improved his articulation and interpretation of regional Mexican music, helped him learn to interact with a live audience — and be in front of a television camera — plus, helped him make many new friends.

At Tuesday's council meeting, Fata thanked his fellow mariachi performers, his teachers and his family. "Being able to have the joy to inspire all of these children that want to sing or play an instrument, it's really big for me being able to be a part of that," Fata said. "I have no words to explain how I feel that I can (have) that effect on those children."

Velazquez and Councilwoman Mickie Luna both said that they voted repeatedly for Fata during his time on "La Voz Kids." 

Fata and the other members of Mariachi Juvenil Alma de Mexico are scheduled to compete in the Mariachi Nationals in Los Angeles this summer.

Adam Breen

Adam Breen has been a San Benito County resident since 1980 and graduated from Sacred Heart School and San Benito High School before earning a bachelor's degree from California State University, Fresno. A father of two sons, Adam has taught newspaper, English and yearbook at SBHS for the past decade, after six years as a magazine editor for Santa Clara University. He previously was editor of the Hollister Free Lance and content director for BenitoLink.