Today, we are talking with Marcus from Tampa, Florida’s Orchestra Fuego, who is riding the success of their second album, Salsa Brava.
Who is Luis “Torpedo” Aponte, and why is he important to Orchestra Fuego?
Luis Aponte is our lead singer and Luisand I played together in the late 70’s, early 80’s in NYC when Salsa Music was at its peak. We had a band called Fuego ’77 and recorded with the great Fania Records. After we both left the music scene we kind of lost touch with each other only to find out that we both moved to Florida. We then found each other about 3 years ago, and reunited and formed Orchestra Fuego.
How did Salsa Brava move from initial thought to finished effort?
Salsa Brava was our second album and with a band called Orchestra Fuego, we wanted to capture our sizzling performances with a title that matched our style of performing. Salsa Brava in English is sort of “Tough Salsa” but better translated to “Invigorating Salsa.”
What sorts of logistical (and other) difficulties do you experience coordinating a ten-member band?
Well, 12 band members to be exact and not easy. I have set rehearsal times way in advance, but recently with all the attention we have been getting from either promoter’s, internet Radio stations, magazines and our music playing on Pandora and Jango Radio, it has become easier to schedule rehearsals. We have been blessed with some awesome musicians and are excited that the band is performing more.
Which performers most influenced Orchestra Fuego during the creation of this album?
Our energy has always started with Me, Luis Aponte and Jorge Tamayo our other lead singer. We compose and arrange our own music and just have a fun time thinking of new songs.
Not to mention that our other band members have a passion for playing Salsa music and it shows when we perform.
How has your style evolved and changed over the period since you released your debut disc, Encendido? How different is OF’s style from traditional (old school) salsa acts?
Encendido was our starting point and we had some great arrangers helping us out. I have a good friend, Arturo Ortiz who was the musical director for the Ricky Martin band during the Vida Loca days and he is just an outstanding musician and arranger. The style has not changed from Encendido to Salsa Brava; our level of playing has really increased. We have a new producer, Victor Romero and he really brings out the best of us. My thought when creating Orchestra Fuego was to bring back the show in performances. There are many good bands out there but they don’t put on a show, they just perform. We engage the audience and make them a part of our performances. The singers go out into the crowd, they sing along or dance with us. Our reviews state exactly that; we are “Showmen.” Well women too; we have two women in our band; Martha Delgado plays the Baritone Saxophone and Veronica Romero does backup vocals.
Fans of salsa may remember Marcus from Fuego ’77; how has the music industry changed over the last forty years?
Oddly enough, it hasn’t changed much. Latin music in the US has really taken a back seat. But in South American countries Salsa music thrives and we’re making some connections in Colombia, Peru and surrounding countries to bring our music to these areas.
What has provided more of your fans – Facebook / Instagram / Twitter or traditional word of mouth?
Facebook has really gotten the word out there about Orchestra Fuego; we are now using Twitter and other social media to continue to promote our band. We just need to find the right person to handle that for us.
What are your plans for the rest of 2017?
We are now in the works for recording our third album and it’s coming out sizzling! Our musicality continues to grow. We are also doing a music video to one of our songs in Salsa Brava album titled “Isla De Mi Querer”; it’s a song about Puerto Rico and Cuba and the beauty of both Islands.
How can listeners contact you and find your music?
Do you have any thoughts for our readers at NeuFutur?
It has been an awesome experience being on NeuFutur and it’s a must these days to get the recognition to bring your music out to the masses.
Thank you so much for your time.