Almost Rosario
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Almost Rosario


Band Rock Acoustic


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This band has not uploaded any videos


The best kept secret in music


"Beating Adema's new single release"

Rosario from Chicago brings on a new trend to genre-mutating compilations. This young trio offers us glimpses into emo, light punk, ambiance, and experimental progressive. Recently claiming an unexpected #34th spot on CMJ(beating Adema's new single release) with "Go," Rosario looks to be a promising fresh new dose of experimental music.
-Travis Maki

Northwind music journalist
October 2003 - The North Wind

"Pot Of Gold At Potbelly’s In Orland Park"

At the Orland Park Potbelly Sandwich Works, you can also catch some entertainment Thursday through Sunday afternoons between 11 and 2 PM.

One of the clerks told me the open mic is an invitation to any signers or comedians, but they don’t get many comics. Maybe I’ll get my alter-ego, Ray Hanania, to do a set there.

One of the regulars who performs at Potbelly in Orland Park is a guitarist and singer named Lupe Martinez.

She is a part of a band called “Almost Rosario,” the brainchild of singer Lupe Martinez and band drummer Gregory Hale.

Their web page at explains, “The open genre approach to their song writing allows for almost anything to happen. This has allowed the band to be successful in many different platforms and to create a large underground following. Influences include: Radiohead, Smashing Pumpkins, PJ Harvey, Liz Phair, Sarah Mclachlan, Pearl Jam, Nirvana , and many more.”

Thank God they didn’t say Paul Harvey.

Check out the stripped-down sound of “Almost Rosario” and get one-on-one with Lupe as she performs at Potbelly's Sandwich Works every Thursday, Friday and Sunday from 12 until 3 PM.

She also performs at Potbelly’s downtown locations, every Monday 11:30 AM - 2:30 PM at the Merchandise Mart (1st Floor-Wells/Kinzie) and every Wednesday & Saturday 11;30 am - 2:30 PM at the WLS Building (190 North State Street, at the corner of State & Lake).

But even if it isn’t for the great tunes, you’ll love this sandwich place that all sandwich joints should aspire to.

The 411

Potbelly Sandwich Works
Orland Park
15825 South La Grange Road

- © 2005 Vondrak Publishing, Inc.

"Almost Rosario aims for international success"

It's amazing what can change in six months.

Half a year ago, guitarist and vocalist Lupe Martinez and drummer Gregory Hale, of Almost Rosario, didn't have a solid lineup.

Now, the session players the duo recruited have become full-fledged members.

"I just feel like we have a nice chemistry, a great lineup, and we're really working on a great-sounding album," Martinez, an Orland Park native, said.

That lineup includes lead guitarist Hector Segura, of Cicero; bassist Ria Neri, of Chicago's Bridgeport neighborhood; and keyboardist Jesse Mayer, of Homewood.

The five-piece band has made it to the finals of the Emergenza, an international battle of the bands.

"We're all really excited to be part of the festival in general," Hale said.

"It's opened up a lot of opportunities for us. It's a great venue to play in the city, and it's a milestone for me and Lupe and actually everybody in the group just to play on that stage."

Hale is referring to the legendary Metro, where 12 bands will battle for the chance to go to Germany for Taubertal, a three-day open-air festival.

Almost Rosario will be joined on the Metro stage by acoustic guitarist and background vocalist Jamie Nichols, of Westmont, who was drafted to bring more harmonies to the 20-minute set.

To get to the Metro, the new lineup had to get it in gear for the first and second Emergenza rounds at the Note in Chicago in January and March. Then it was on to Chicago's Double Door in May.

This year's Emergenza is also part of industry magnet MOBfest, which brings in record label representatives from Los Angeles, New York and throughout the country.

"It will just allow us to be seen by a lot more people," Hale said. "Hopefully there will be some Artists and Repertoire people in town from a major or indie (label).

"I'd love just to get a little more notice from the industry and fans as well."

One thing that might make music fans take a closer look at the alternative rock band is the female aspect.

"It is a draw to have two girls on stage because it's not very often that you see it, especially in the suburbs," Martinez said.

Hale added, "Obviously, in the world of big music, they like looks and sex sells, but what we really want to do is play great music and connect with people."

Martinez said she would like to see the estrogen factor upped in local bands.

"Unfortunately, I don't see that many girls playing and I would love to," she said.

"I see a lot of acoustic acts, but I definitely do think females draw, particularly the males and maybe even the teenage girls."

For those who dine at Potbelly Sandwich Works, Martinez may be familiar since she plays during the lunch hour in Orland Park and Chicago throughout the week.

"It's background music, but I think it's good because I play so much more. I'm practicing my finger skills and I'm singing a lot more," she said.

According to Hale, the vocals have to resonate in order for Almost Rosario — a moniker stemming from Nari's first foray in the band and her name in Spanish being Rosario — to connect with others.

"We want to have good music, but we always want to have a strong point focusing on the vocals," he said.

Some of that music is on, and a full CD is in the works.

Overdubs were done at Groupie Productions, Hale's Homewood home studio, and the upcoming release is being engineered by Colin Studybaker at Chicago's Engine Studios and produced by the band.

Almost Rosario also is prepping for an hour-long July 3 gig at the Independence Day celebration in Orland Park.

"Hopefully, it will allow us to tap into the younger market because we are doing a lot of 21-plus shows," Hale said.

But first up is Emergenza on Saturday.

"Hopefully we'll take Emergenza and go to Germany," Martinez said.

"Greg is a five-year planner and I'm a six-month planner. I just like to take it as it comes and so far, this year has been good.

"I feel like we've been going up and up and up." - The Star Newspapers 2005


Still working on that hot first release.


Feeling a bit camera shy


Almost Rosario formed in Chicago at the end of 2004. It's members, all from remarkably different backgrounds, build on each other's influences forming a truly exclusive sound.

From Ria's wicked bass-lines to Greg's ultra-dynamic drumming and Jesse's thick analog layers and lush pads, Almost Rosario's rhythm section holds each song together tightly. Spacey melodies flow seamlessly to searing leads, complimenting while never overpowering singer/songwriter Lupe's passionate and identifiable lyrics. Her unique and defined vocal styles vary from angelic and entrancing to strongly demanding with carefully arranged songs equally as diverse.

The recording phase of their full length debut album is nearing completion and post production is just around the bend. Slated for a summer '07 release, it will prove to be an eclectic but cohesive listening experience suited for lovers of many genres.