Merengue

LOS HERMANOS ROSARIO ESCRIBIENDO LA HISTORIA DEL MERENGUE POR CASI CUATRO DECADAS

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Los Hermanos Rosario, es una de las mas importantes agrupaciones musicales de La Republica Dominicana, un verdadero icono del merengue que ha podido mantenerse en los primeros lugares de popularidad por 38 años consecutivos y ganarse la preferencia del pueblo durante  generaciones.

Es imposible hablar de Merengue sin mencionar a Tony, Luis y Rafa Rosario, las caras de esta popular agrupación

Los Rosario llevan a sus millones de seguidores un merengue con estilo, un sonido que se renueva constantemente, que se adapta a los nuevos tiempos e increíblemente sus integrantes han desafiado la ley del tiempo y hoy lucen más jóvenes y en mejor forma física que el primero de mayo de 1978, día en que se formó oficialmente su orquesta.

 

Este ha sido un camino largo y duro, nos confiesan los hermanos, cayéndonos y levantándonos tantas veces como ha sido necesario. Crear merengue para las nuevas y no tan nuevas generaciones ha sido una labor de amor, de disciplina militar, de hacer las cosas bien y sobre todo de respetar al público.

La unión y la hermandad han sido la clave transcendental del éxito para este grupo, la manera en que fueron criados estos 14 hermanos por un padre zapatero y una madre que realizaba trabajos esporádicos de limpieza en el pueblo de Higuey, en medio de carencias económicas que nunca sintieron porque estaban demasiado ocupados divirtiéndose, siendo niños y soñando a ser músicos.

 

A pesar de las altas y bajas han sabido mantenerse en el gusto popular, algunos de los momentos mas dificiles fueron el asesinato de su hermano y director musical, Pepe Rosario en 1982 y la salida de la agrupación de otro de los hermanos: Toño Rosario,

 

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“Toño era muy inquieto, esta ha sido ha sido su personalidad siempre, llegamos a Puerto Rico y se enamoró de esta muchacha, la Cintrón y quiso formar tienda aparte”,

 

Hoy, Los Hermanos Rosario disfrutan de un lugar preferencial dentro de la historia del merengue. Rafa entiende que su grupo y los merengueros de antes han luchado mucho para que el ritmo continúe vigente y que ahora le toca a la nueva generación hacer su parte.

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 CUAL ES SU GRUPO DE MUSICA PREFERIDO?

Nos gusta mucho nuestro hermano, Toño Rosario, Eddie Herrera está haciendo también un muy buen trabajo.

Johnny Ventura, Sergio Vargas y Fernando Villalona se mantienen trabajando. Peña Suazo y Kinito Mendez también siguen luchando para que el merengue se mantenga pegado. Y a Joseito Mateo hay que incluirlo en los Records Guinnes, porque aún sigue cantando merengue a sus 96 años de edad.

 

QUE LES PREOCUPA DE LOS DOMINICANOS EN LA ISLA Y DE LOS DOMINICANOS EN USA?

Me preocupa mucho la falta de educación, hacen faltan talleres, institutos técnicos y programas educativos para acabar con la delincuencia en Rep. Dom.

El dominicano en USA se ha superado mucho en los últimos anos, me siento muy orgulloso de nuestra gente que se ha dedicado a trabajar y a superarse. Tenemos muchos dominicanos destacados en la política, los negocios, el arte y estudiando en las más prestigiosas universidades.

 

QUIEN ES EL MAS BUENMOSO DE LOS ROSARIO:

Rafa: Yo, por supuesto

 

Y EL MAS FEO?

Toño, es tan feo que el mismo se llama el cuco (carcajadas)

Rueda de prensa en la que Toño Rosario y Los Hermanos Rosario anunciaron su reencuentro en los escenario después de casi 20 años, en un show que formara parte de los premios El Soberano. Foto: Ariel Díaz-Alejo/acento.com.do Fecha: 04/04/2013.

What You Didn’t about Chino y Nacho

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Chino and Nacho were just two kids with big dreams for musical stardom. One was an athlete and the other already knew he wanted to become a world renowned artist some day.

Before they became the popular reggaeton duo, they were simply Jesús Alberto Miranda Pérez (Chino) and Miguel Ignacio Mendoza (Nacho) from Venezuela.

Pérez came from Caracas, the capital of Venezuela and Mendoza came from Lecherias. Although they lived four and a half a part from each other, their paths would one day collide.

Not content with being a star athlete in sports such as baseball, and hoping to one day make his mark as a renowned artist, Pérez put all his passion into making music.

First he joined “Scala 1” and then “Censorship C“, both of which had hits, but were modestly successful as a group.

Mendoza was known for being a singer, dancer and composer since he was a child. Him pursuing music full time seemed like a natural progression.

Mendoza started to gain attention by being in the salsa band “Children’s Swing“, which toured the Zulia state and other surrounding cities for years, followed by appearances on the reality television show Venevision Generation “S” with his polyphonic group “Balance.”

Because of their charisma and talent, they were both soon discovered by Johnny Nunez and ended up joining the merengue hip hop group “Calle Ciega.” The other members of that group were Kent Barry James (Kent), Luis Fernando Romero (Luifer) and Emilio Vizcaino (Emilio).

Chino Y Nacho appeared on the cover of LatinTRENDS Magazine in November 2014. See Their Video shout out below:

Within that group they made five albums and helped to create the popular hit song ” Mi Cachorrita.” During that time, the groups sound changed from merengue to more dance style reggaeton.

As the two members continued to explore more musical styles, they formed the duo Chino y Nacho. Their music incorporated merengue, reggaeton, pop, reggae and salsa. In a few years they went from being popular in their home country of Venezuela to becoming international superstars once their first album “Época de Reyes” started gaining traction in other Latin American countries and then the United States.

The duo is not all about making music all the time. They like to serve their community. They take part in Education Through Music which raises money to help support music education programs in schools. They also participate in St. JudesThanks and Giving Campaign. This aids children with cancer and their families by providing schooling, housing and treatment for childhood cancer.

Fun Facts

  • Nacho bought plane tickets for a couple stranded at the airport after they missed their flight
  • Chino considered becoming a professional baseball player
  • They were judges on Simon Cowell’s “El Factor X Kids” in Mexico
  • They have an app to stay connected with their fans
  • Chino has dreams of making films in Venezuela when he is not making music

 

Milly Quezada: The Queen “MQ” is Back

[Originally published in DTM Magazine Issue #22; October 2005].

 

22 - Milly Quezada

 

Refreshing, joyful yet sentimental, is how the innovative and pioneering Milly Quezada’s new record, entitled “MQ” is regarded. It is the 28th album of lengthy and eventful artistic career, which started with “Milly & Los Vecinos.” Today after having been a soloist for many years, she still sows and harvests quality merengue hits, and that’s why she is duly referred to as “The Queen of Merengue.” “MQ,” her first album under her new label, J&N Records, contains eleven songs, ten of which are merengues. The other song, “La Mala Palabra” (Vamos Pa’ La Calle) is already being played on many radio stations. This song is a fusion of merengue and reggaeton where Milly sings a duet with Hector “El Father,” who is a sensation among adults as well as young fans.

Since her recording of “Pienso Asi,” in 2003, Milly has not recorded anything but her absence was not noticed since she was appearing in concerts within and outside her country, as well as receiving many prestigious nominations and awards. Besides, during the time she was away from the recording studios, she took the opportunity to carefully prepare this production with the Dominican singer and writer, Ramon Orlando Valoy “El Maestro,” and to select the songs for this new project. “I feel very comfortable working with Ramon Orlando, I admire his work and the intensity he displays when producing songs.” Milly is also very proud because her sons participated in the production: Miguel Vasquez arranged the single “La Mala Palabra” and Anthony Vasquez did outstanding work with the chorus. As the old saying goes: “The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree,” as both young boys according to Milly, “have a natural musical aptitude.”

 

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Many critics question how the fusion of reggaeton and merengue will benefit artists in each genre, to which Milly replied, “I know we will benefit from it since reggaeton is at its peak. We shall all benefit, because I think reggaeton is part of the tropical musical legacy that identifies us as Caribbean.” Milly is not worried about her audience accepting “La Mala Palabra” with Hector “El Father” alleging that she “cannot dictate what the public might like to listen to or want to buy.”

Merengue is already 150 years old, and we asked Milly if she believed that reggaeton could replace it. “It will never replace it; I believe that reggaeton is having a good moment. The thing with music is that it is cyclical. I lived through the time when salsa reigned exclusively in all places. And I also lived through the times when merengue took off, and I enjoyed that too. I understand that reggaeton is going through an important period in its development, but like many other things, it is going to cyclical, it’s going to go up to the same levels we experienced with salsa, merengue and bachata, as well as with ballads and boleros. We shall live to see it keep up with the times, because it has quality and the people understand that it must be kept alive.”

It was rumored in various occasions that Milly Quezada would not return to the spotlight after being awarded the Latino Grammy in 2003. “MQ” is back to prove that the crown still belongs to her and that she will conquer the new generation of listeners with her new album while captivating her original fan base.

HENRY SANTOS PLAYLIST SONGS YOU NEVER GUESSED

Henry Santos, now in his third year as a solo artist, is enjoying the success of his latest top ten single, “La Vida” which ironically is a merengue song, produced by Latin Grammy winner, Maffio, and sung by Henry, known better as a Bachata artist.

We had an opportunity to talk with Henry and among the things he shared with us are five songs that are on his music playlist that may surprise a lot of his fans. Being a fan of this type of list, Henry dug in and shared some of these gems.

 

1-Michael Buble’- Home

2-Frank Sinatra- Fly me to the Moon

3-Michael Jackson- Beat It (My son loves every Michael Jackson song)

4-Jay Z’ Takeover- The Blueprint album

and number 5

Jose Jose – El es tu hombre

 

There you have it. Five personal Henry Santos songs from his playlist. See Henry Santos in an exclusive interview in the June issue of Latin Trends where he discusses Fathers Day and why its so important to him, his new single, and his campaign against obesity.

 

Henry Santos

 

Alex Diaz & Layla Angulo at Salsa Groove Fridays at SOB’s

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Percussionist and Merengue Jazz King, Alex Diaz, and his band, Son De La Calle, will return to SOB’s for a special edition of Salsa Groove on Friday, August 30! Also performing to celebrate the release of her latest album, ‘TriAngulo,’ will be Layla Angulo, one of the only female saxophonists/vocalists/band directors in the world of Latin music today.

Considered the pioneer of the merengue-jazz concept– a title inherited from his mentor, Mario Rivera El Comandante” (considered the best Dominican musician ever) —Alex Diaz began playing with popular local bands from his home region such as Nina “ El Gago”, “Yeyen” y su Bajo, “los Antillanos del Sabor” among others at the age of 10. At age 16, he joined the group “Los Juveniles del Sabor”, whose lead vocalists were Ruby Perez and Aramis Camilo, both considered among the best in the country.

A young Alex Diaz’s first gig in New York was with famed Dominican merengue singer, Victor White. Diaz’s big break came in a call from Jazz pianist Hilton Ruiz, with whom Diaz went on tour for the next two years. His career took off soon after, performing with big names such as Tito Puente, Jose Figaro, Chucho Valdez, Mario Bauza and the Afro Cuban Ban, Dizzy Gillespie and the United Nations Orchestra, Xavier Cougart, Ceila Cruz, Alfredo “Chocolate” Armenteros, Cachoao, just to name a few.

Alex Diaz keeps busy today, performing alongside his band “Son De La Calle” around New York City. His latest project, “The Bebop Bogaloo Kings” is the first of many attempts in combining Jazz and Contemporary music with Santo Dominigo’s folkloric beat, “merengue.” This is only the beginning for Diaz, as his career continues its upward trajectory.

Layla Angulo is an adept composer, band director, singer, saxophonist, and flutist who has toured the world with her own 13 piece orchestra, as well as with reggaeton superstar Don Omar, Tito Puente Jr., and the Sugarhorns. In addition to playing with the best, Layla has received numerous awards for composition including her 2010 Hit, “Que Te Vaya Bien Sin Mi” in the International Songwriting Competition.

Layla was also a semi-finalist for her latest salsa tune, ‘La Pelicula.’ Having worked with Luisito Quintero, Oscar Stagnaro, Arturo O’Farrill, Tony Escapa, Carlos Cascante (Spanish Harlem Orchestra), MastaKriz LaGuira, and other Grammy award-winning musicians, Layla’s set to bring her masterful sounds and heavenly voice to SOB’s for Salsa Groove to perform songs from her forthcoming album, ‘TriAngulo,’ which is to mark a breakthrough moment in her career.

Bring your dancing shoes and prepare to groove like you never have before on Friday, August 30! Doors for this event open at 5PM, with an afterwork happy hour from 5-7, a beginners salsa dance lesson at 7, and the first set of live music with Alex Diaz beginning at 8PM. There will be a second set with Layla at 10PM.

Tickets can be purchased at: www.ticketweb.com
More info on the show visit: www.sobs.com

Elvis Crespo Admits To Alcoholism

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Puerto Rican “merenguero” Elvis Crespo has admitted to alcohol abuse after he visited the Leonardo Valentin Tirado hospital in Guaynabo Puerto Rico Thursday night. Crespo has made headlines recently for an altercation with manager of Made In Puerto Rico restaurant Alexander de Jesús who ended up beating up the singer. The fight resulted in 41-year-old Crespo defecating on himself.

This incident occurred after the “Suavemente” star was at a casino where he got drunk and started harassing a female employee which got him kicked out.

Crespo apologized to the public and told reporters “What happened on Monday morning was definitely unfortunate and embarrassing. I was wrong and I apologize to my family, to my fans. I admit that I have a problem with alcohol, and that I have to work on it. I’m already seeking rehabilitation. I wish I could rewind, these are things that happen. God has a purpose for this and I’ll do what’s necessary to move forward. Life consists of things like this.”

The singer’s representative Helga García told reporters that rehabilitation would be sought abroad.

“Elvis’ decision [to accept his addiction] was brave and the right thing to do,” García said. “We are very proud and satisfied with that.”

We hope Elvis gets the help that he needs.

Eddy Herrera Iniciara Gira Promocional Por la Cuidad de Nueva York

La estrella del merengue, Eddy Herrera,está a punto de estrenar su nuevo disco y ya es foco de atención dentro y fuera de su natal República Dominicana.  El intérprete de “Paso Firme” iniciará el próximo miercoles 28 de septiembre un periplo promocional por la ciudad de Nueva York.

 

Eddy Herrera arranca de esta manera una aguerrida promoción de su próxima producción discográfica “Viviendo al Tiempo”, que incluye su primer sencillo “Vida Loca”, del cual acaba de grabar el video clip en República Dominicana, bajo la dirección de Jochy Fersobe.

 

La placa será lanzada bajo la tutela de Premium Latin Music y estará físicamente en el mercado el próximo 11 de octubre; pero podrá ser adquirida digitalmente a partir del 27 de septiembre, “El Gigante del Merengue” tambien iniciará un nuevo tour por Latinoamerica.

 

“Después de casi ocho meses de haber iniciado la difícil y ardua tarea de producir este disco, me siento muy orgulloso con el trabajo final y plenamente confiado de que el público lo recibirá como siempre, con los brazos abiertos”, aseguró “El Galán del Merengue”.

 

La estrella latina sostiene que este álbum tendrá su “estampa” que le ha permitido mantenerse durante 21 años en los escenarios, pero también el nuevo colorido que imprimen las fusiones y los sonidos contemporáneos que le permitan mantener el contacto con las nuevas generaciones.

Juan Luis Guerra: La Leyenda en Vivo!

by: Eddie Olmo

I was sitting at the Barber’s chair when suddenly a new song, ‘Bachata En Fuoka’, from Juan Luis Guerra played on the radio.  The mood of the establishment changed.  For the first time since I sat down the Barber spoke to me.  “Todo lo que el(Juan L Guerra) hace, se pega.”, I nodded my head as to agree with him.  Then I began to wonder about this man, Juan Luis Guerra, who brought Bachata to the U.S.

 

It was 1990; exactly 21 years ago, salsa and merengue dominated the airwaves.  Bootlegged tapes and CD’s were rampant on the streets.  Dominicans, for the most part were being recognized in New York since their population was growing.  The song ‘Burbujas De Amor’ hit the streets and everyone wanted to dance to this.  The melody, the tone it set was sexual yet romantic.  It wasn’t a dance sensation like the Lambada, but it was music with lyrics that people enjoyed to dance.

 

Soon after ‘Bachata Rosa’ was released and again Bachata fever was in.  Traditional Bachata began to surface on the radio.  Not everyone who enjoyed Juan Luis Guerra’s music liked the traditional Bachata that followed.  Again a division in culture and music separated the Latinos.  This separation didn’t last long, since Bachata was on the radio all the time those who didn’t like the music began to like and understand it.

 

What made Juan Luis Guerra’s Bachata different from the rest?  It wasn’t your typical Bachata.  Listening to it now it sounds commercialized, but not water down enough to lose its essence, to lose its culture or its romanticism.  I think that for this reason Bachata was able to break into the international market.

Thank You Juan Luis Guerra, the Living Legend.

 

Music Weekend Getaways

by: Eddie Olmo

For all of the salsero who missed Gonzalez and Gonzalez, the Mexican restaurant/nightclub that catered to salsa lover, the world renowned S.O.B.’s is playing a tribute to G&G this Saturday March 12th, 2011.  Admission will be free from 11:30pm.  Performing will be Salsa En La Calle’s very own Willie Villegas Y Entre Amigos.  S.O.B.’s is located at 204 Varick St.

For those people in the Bronx looking for salsa, merengue and bachata then you could head to the Bronx best kept secret La Union Rincoena located at 586 E 161st Street, between Cauldwell and Third Ave in the South Bronx.  La Rincoena is only opened on Saturdays and has a live band that plays a variety of music.

If you’re in Brooklyn tomorrow and can’t wait to get your groove on then you can visit Brooklyn Crossroads Supper Club, NYC located at 402 3rd Ave., corner of 6th Street in Park Slope, Brooklyn who host “Salsa Con Cache” Thursdays.