Written by on April 29, 2013

Monday 29th April

LatinAotearoa was born from the concept of blending local flavours with the colourful culture of South America. Popular Auckland DJ Bobby Brazuka brought together Venezuelan songstress Jennifer Zea and multi-talented musician and producer Isaac Aesili to create a unique live performance. Bobby’s Latin influenced soul-funk and hip hop selections were layered with Jennifer’s ravishing vocals and Isaac’s explosive percussion.

The local response was so positive that the trio tested international waters in 2012 by taking their sound to Europe and Australia. It was soon apparent that this was not just a recipe for kiwi appetites – bustling crowds meant promoters were quick to discuss future tours. This natural progression and a desire to develop musically led to what felt like an inevitable next step; new and original productions to season an already flavoursome set.

With a Latin jazz and soul background, Jennifer’s live vocals over recognised contemporary tracks blend so seamlessly they pass as originals. One particular fan favourite, a Spanish spin of Ladi 6’s soul number, Walk Right Up, is delivered so exceptionally that the artist permitted an official LatinAotearoa version to be made. This collaborative approach to creating new music became the catalyst for producing an exciting and original debut album.

Sonido de Latinaotearoa

Former Opensouls trumpeter Isaac Aesili, who recently returned from touring Japan and Europe with his latest project Funkommunity, produced the 14 unique tracks that are Sonido de Latinaotearoa during New Zealand’s endless summer. Working with some of the country’s most prestigious musical talents, Isaac crafted an extraordinary assortment of contemporary Latin rhythms.

Influences from salsa composer Tito Puento and bossa nova singer Astrud Gilberto to more modern artists such Nickodemus, Fania All Stars and Quantic can be heard throughout. From melodic ballad La Procesion to the simmering Latin dancehall track Something About You with Tom Scott and reggae singer Jah Red Lion, this is an array of varying tempos that flow elegantly as an album. Other featured guests on the album include Nathan Haines, Anna Coddington, Jonathan Crayford, Submariner, Steph Brown and Miguel Fuente.

Guests aside, the signature sound of Latinaotearoa is ever-present; Jennifer’s sultry vocals, Isaac’s brilliant musicianship and Bobby’s firm vision has created a fresh and unique sound that will receive a rapturous response when played live. Sonido de Latinaotearoa is much more than an album – it’s a watershed moment for Latin music in Aotearoa. Sonido de LatinAotearoa is out May 3rd 2013, via Rhythmethod. | FACEBOOK | SOUNDCLOUDBANDCAMP

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