Gilberto Santa Rosa releases album with the Puerto Rican orchestra La Sonora Sanjuanera

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The Puerto Rican salsa player Gilberto Santa Rosa (l) and the conductor of the La Sonora Sanjuanera orchestra, the pianist and composer Víctor García (r) pose for Efe during an interview on Tuesday, October 23, 2018, in San Juan, Puerto Rico. EFE

The Puerto Rican salsa player Gilberto Santa Rosa has released the album “En buena compañía” with the La Sonora Sanjuanera orchestra, which includes the performances of the Puerto Rican Andy Montañez, the Venezuelan Rodrigo Mendoza and the Cubans Roberto “Robertón” Hernández and Yenny Valdez.

Said musical project, said today to Efe Santa Rosa, has as purpose to make the Sonora Sanjuanera, directed by the pianist and composer Víctor García almost twenty years ago, be recognized in the most important places of salsa worldwide.

“The idea is to present this live so that people know the orchestra,” said Santa Rosa, known as “El Caballero de la Salsa”, in an interview on Tuesday with Garcia.

Santa Rosa, also described as “hilarious” the opportunity to have recorded a production using the musicians of La Sonora Sanjuanera and not the members of his orchestra.

“I had a lot of fun, and besides, Víctor’s orchestra is a more dance-oriented orchestra, and we merge both and feel the mix,” said Santa Rosa.
Garcia, for his part, stressed that it was “a unique opportunity” to have made available to his orchestra to work with the renowned salsa artist.

“It’s a thing that you end your life and do not end how to thank him,” said Garcia, director of an orchestra that works “under the radar” of commercial salsa, he said, but surely now will be known more.

“Given this opportunity, it is obviously a catapult, Gilberto is putting Sonora Sanjuanera and me on the map,” added García, a graduate of the Ernesto Ramos Antonini Free School of Music in San Juan, as well as Santa Rosa.

García, in turn, affirmed that due to the joint work with Santa Rosa the followers of the Caribbean gender have already seen “the fruits and the changes in the attitude of the people towards the group”.

“You can do your best to do the job well, and always trust what we were doing, but if nothing happens, then at least I left it documented, but it is not the same as a person of Gilberto’s caliber who trusts in the work what one is doing, “he said.

“It’s a good combination ‘cool’, because they will listen to Gilberto in the romantic, but more rhythmic style of Sonora Sanjuanera,” he added.

Santa Rosa also took advantage of the musical occasion to also collaborate with García in the composition of “Cuando a ti te pasar”, performed by Montañez, and in “Pa ‘atrás se no puede”, by the Cuban artist living in Puerto Rico Juan José Hernández, author of other successes of Santa Rosa, as “Countdown”.

Hernandez, meanwhile, also composed for “In good company” the themes “Love of love” and “Oh life.”

On the interpretation of Montañez, Santa Rosa said that it was “a dream to work with him” because it was the first time in their careers that both joined in a song, because they have always coincided in presentations, bohemian or television programs.

Likewise, Santa Rosa, who last July visited and presented for the first time in Cuba, highlighted the participation respectively of “Robertón” Hernández and Valdez, interpreter and ex-member of the renowned Cuban orchestra Los Van Van, of which the Puerto Rican salsa player is faithful admirer

And following that Caribbean line, García composed the Cuban son “Son de amor”, which in a funny way the artist said that “it’s not a Cuban son, but a santurcino son”, alluding to the fact that the theme came from Santurce’s San Juan sector, where does this one come from?

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