Mambo Tropical, is a non-stop journey through some of the hottest contemporary and classic Salsa, Cumbia, Merengue and Reggaeton sounds of our time. Steeped in the rich Afro-Cuban music traditions and led by the vocals of Yvette Watts, this collection is sure to be a favorite of Latin music fans everywhere. The band can perform to a wide range of requirements from a small, quiet combo to a swingin' full-on 12-piece powerhouse.
Mambo Tropical features Vocalist Yvette Watts, Orlando Castro, Ric Feliciano and flutist Teresa Orozco. The Rhythm Section includes Joaquin Pla on Timbales, Shane Cantanho on Piano, Jim Polizzi on Bass, and various other percussionist of the San Francisco Bay Area.
Orlando Castro - Lead Singer, Songwriter, Background Vocals, Guitar Player, Harmonica Player
Orlando is a successful Singer, Songwriter, Guitar and Harmonica Player. Orlando penned two songs for Luis Miguel's breakthrough album, "ARIES" (WEA 1993), which won the 1994 Grammy Award for best "Latin Pop Album." That same year, Orlando once again struck gold when he won the coveted BMI's 1994 Song Of The Year award for the song, "Suave", sung by Luis Miguel. Moreover, Orlando's hit song, "Suave", shot to the top nine(9) Billboard Hot Latin Tracks for all of 1994. In 1997, Orlando's song, "Si Te Vas", was included in "Billboard Hot Latin Tracks: Best of Pop 1997 : Various Artists". Currently, both of Orlando's songs, "Suave" and "Si Te Vas", have re-emerged in Luis Miguel's remix album "No Culpes a La Noche - The Club Remixes" (Warner Music 2009) and have recently climbed to #4 on the Mexican and USA Latin charts. In Argentina during the same interval, the album peaked at #1.
Ric "Mightybone" Feliciano - Lead Singer, Songwriter, Trombonist, Background Vocals, Keyboardist
Ric, who is a Puerto Rican from New York City (Nuyorican) is a Singer, Songwriter, Keyboardist & Trombonist. Working for 30 years in music business, Ric has performed with Billy Joel, Paul Simon, Foreigner, Pete Escovedo, John Lee Hooker, Jr. and many others. Ric was an integral part the Grammy nominated album, Phil Driscoll's "Warriors" (Word Records 1994). Ric now lends his astounding musical writing talents as well as his gift with arrangements to Mambo Tropical's upcoming album. Ric's influences are Willie Colon, Jimmy Bosch, Hector Lavoe, and Chino Nunez with the Spanish Harlem Orchestra, Marc Anthony, and Horn Bands from the 60's and 70's R&B era.
Vocalist Yvette Watts has always been passionate about music. Born into a musical family, Yvette starting singing at a young age, and over the years her dynamic and captivating vocal abilities flourished. After impressing several music industry veterans, Yvette was invited to perform on the TV show Buscando Estrellas and won first prize at the Festival de la Cancion Latino Americana. She has toured throughout Europe with the Cuesta College Vocal Jazz Ensemble and studied with Russian opera legend Marina Koshetz as well as with Nela Girolo.
Teresa Orozco - Flauta
Flutist Teresa Orozco's musical activities range from orchestral player and contractor, recording artist, studio musician, musical director and founder of the chamber ensembles of "Ovation Chamber Music". As an educator and mentor to over 80 young musicians, she is now in her ninth season as conductor for the Avanti Flute Choir of the San Jose Youth Symphony Organization. As a contract musician, she is currently a flutist of the Monterey Symphony since 1987, New Music Works since 1992, and performs for the Carmel Bach Festival since 2005. She subs for Opera San Jose, West Bay Opera and the Santa Cruz Symphony. In 2009, Teresa was a sub with the Cabrillo Festival of Modern Music under the direction of Marin Alsop. In 1983 she toured with the San Francisco Merola Western Opera Company.
Joaquin Pla - Percussion
Born in Barranquilla, Columbia from a musical family consisting of six brothers & two sisters all of which play in different groups. Juaquin has played and recorded with flautist Nester Torres, the Lucho Bermudez Orchestra as well as Grupo Niche.
Shane Cantanho - Piano
Shane began classical training in the third grade & then began playing jazz in high school & won the outstanding solo award at the Herb Patnoe Jazz Festival. He also has a BA in improvised music from SJSU
Jim "Jimbo" Polizzi - Acoustic Bass
Jim brings a great classic sound to the foundation of the band with his classic salsa instrument, the "Baby" Bass. "Jimbo's" captivating and pulsating bass patterns and sounds provokes audiences out of their seat and on to dance floors everywhere Mambo Tropical performs.
Mambo Tropical will soon be releasing their newly anticipated CD,which features all orginal material written by Orlando Castro, and Ric Feliciano. Mambo Tropical has come a long way, and has evolved into their own unique souond. The new CD features many ballads with up tempo twists, that are sure to capture all the die hard Salseros.
Ric "Mightybone" Feliciano (Writer) (Trombone, Lead Vocal),
Orlando Castro (Writer) (Lead Vocal),
Yvette Watts (Lead Vocal),
Teresa Orozco (Flute, Vocals),
Shane Cantanho (Piano),
Joaquin Pla (Timbales),
Jim Polizzi (Contra Bass ),
Scott Englebright (Trumpet)