Since its formation in 2007, Bachaco has performed more than 300 concerts all the way from Argentina to Canada sharing stage and performing at the same events and festivals as other big names in the reggae and world music scenes. The band will perform at the Green Parrot on Saturday, Feb. 9 at 10 p.m. Let’s get their story from them in their own words.
Q: Where does the name Bachaco come from and why did you choose it?
A: The name Bachaco comes from a leaf-cutter ant that lives in the Amazon rainforest. The natives in Venezuela use it to make an aphrodisiac hot sauce. We chose it because of its relation and connection to nature, these particular ants are a marvel, hard workers, and the aphrodisiac part goes along pretty well with our spicy blend.
Q: Being such a diverse group, how did you come together?
A: Miami is such a melting pot, Eddy met most of the band, Domingo (drums), Matt (guitar) and Bruce (trumpet), through his brother’s high school and did a first official rehearsal in 2007, later in 2009 we met Alex (trombone) through the local music scene. We recently added Farid on guitar who we met through our producer Mariano Aponte. High school connections also led to our current bass player Mumbles and he just recently recruited JP (sax) from other similar walks of life in the local scene.
Q: Where are the band members from?
A: Edilberto “Eddy” Morillo is from Margarita Island in Venezuela. Domingo Medina is from Barquisimeto in Venezuela. Matthew Jacquette was born in Miami and spent his early childhood in Kingston, Jamaica. Bruce McKinnon was also born in Miami to a Colombian mother and Irish father. Alex Cruz was born in New Jersey to Puerto Rican parents and also spent early childhood on the island. Farid Cure was born in Barranquilla, Colombia. Cristian Rocha was born in Peru and John “JP” Guinan was born in Miami.
Q: How would you explain your music to someone that didn’t know what Afro-Caribbean rock is?
A: We like to call our music Afro-Caribbean Roots Rock because it blends Afro-Caribbean Rhythms such as reggae, dancehall, soca, cumbia and ska. At the same time we use our influences from other styles such as rock and hip-hop. We could say we play reggae rock but our fusion is a bit more Caribbean sounding, at least we think so, than other popular acts, so Afro-Caribbean Roots Rock is all of that together. It’s our signature.
Q: Where does the band call home?
A: Miami is our home because that is where we met, where our families live, where we go back after the tour is over. We record and plan our project mostly out of Miami, most of the band lives in the Kendall area.
Q: Is there any one person, or group, that has influenced the whole band?
A: It’s hard to pick one that has influenced the whole band because of our diversity, but I think most of us can agree to “Cultura Profetica” being one of the main sources of inspiration from many aspects. Then again there are different opinions in the band and if we had to go back at a core, probably Bob Marley would make more sense since one way or the other we all love Bob. Who doesn’t?
Q: Do you mix English and Spanish in your music while performing?
A: Some songs are bilingual, some are straight English, some are straight Spanish. It really depends on when the song was written, how it was written, and what it talks about. It doesn’t seem to matter anymore nowadays, our best performance so far was in Canada where nobody spoke Spanish and everybody was singing our songs.
Q: Do you have a video? Where can it be seen?
A: We have only released one official video to date for our single “Cumbia pa’ la Nena” it’s a cumbia-dancehall track and it can be seen online on all our networks ( www.bachacomusic.com ) and the video is already on rotation through MTV Tr3s and MTV Latin America.
Q: Is this your first gig in Key West? What have you heard about the Green Parrot?
A: This is our first time in Key West and we’ve heard many great things about the Green Parrot, in particular from our great friends from Suenalo, Spam Allstars, Xperimento, Locos Por Juana. They all play there all the time. We know that other great New Orleans bands have played there and we have a great connection with New Orleans so we’re super happy and excited to be at the Green Parrot for the first time!
Q: Tell us a little about the music on your new album.
A: This debut album’s music is somewhat of a trip through Bachaco’s history and influences. We recorded 2 of our early party cumbia/dancehall tracks, “Cumbia pa’ la Nena” & “Jamaican Cumbia” as well as new attempt to mix cumbia with a more worldly global beat and hip-hop “Culebra”. We blend in some Reggae Rock and Hip-Hop influences together on tracks like “Feeling Good” and “Pollution”, then we soften up a bit with reggae love songs such as “Ni Una Lagrima” and “Contigo”. Standing out on this record is also “Cruzando Fronteras” a track in which we feature Gondwana, who are truly a Latin Reggae legend and we are honored to have recorded on our album as well as performed a few shows together. Last we have “La Ola” a Rock-Ska track that will pump anyone up, it’s party anthem. We finished the album with a soft acoustic-rock love ballad “Mi Sol” and an instrumental track “Ciao”, it’s our way to say hello and goodbye until our next album.
Q: What radio stations play your music?
A: We’re currently being played all over the world on community and college radio stations from Humboldt County all the way to Argentina but mostly in the U.S. Our song “Cumbia pa’ la Nena” is currently number three on AOL Radio’s Latin Rock Station Top 20 along with many other Latin Rock heavy weights such as Café Tacuba, Bunbury, Mana, Juanes, as well as great up-and-coming acts such as Carla Morrison, La Vida Boheme, Kinky, Zoe, Bebe, Alex Cuba and many more. The list of radio stations that play our music keeps growing organically and that’s a good thing.
Q: Where have you played in 2012 and what are your plans for 2013?
A: In 2012 we performed more than 100 shows in 30 different cities, highlighting performing at the Victoria Ska Fest in Canada with acts such as Toots & The Maytals, Katchafire, Blitz the Ambassador and so many more. We performed in festivals and venues in the U.S. all over Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Maine, California, Texas, Nevada, Washington, Louisiana, the list goes on.
Q: You’ve shared the stage with many talented people/groups. Do you have a favorite or were you impressed by one?
A: Blitz the Ambassador had an amazing show in Canada right after us. Performing with Israel Vibration, living legends, was a true honor and learning experience for us. Tribal Seeds show at the Austin Reggae Fest was very impressing in 2011. If we had to pick one it would be Cultura Profetica, we shared stage with them at the Beacham in Orlando, Florida, that was an amazing show.
Q: What comes after the Key West gig?
A: We’ll keep the touring going and we’re also right now in the studio recording a new album for 2013, our sound keeps maturing and more fans are loving our music.