ARAKA
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ARAKA

Miami Beach, Florida, United States | SELF

Miami Beach, Florida, United States | SELF
Band Latin Reggae

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Jan
12
ARAKA @ Jazid

Miami Beach, Florida, USA

Miami Beach, Florida, USA

Dec
08
ARAKA @ Jazid

Miami Beach, Florida, USA

Miami Beach, Florida, USA

Nov
19
ARAKA @ Bougainvillea's

South Miami, Florida, USA

South Miami, Florida, USA

Music

Press


The word Araka is Spanish slang for “watch out.” This is the best name for a group of talented musicians that want everyone to know they are coming to get the world. And there is no doubt about it, they are ready to conquer the music scene with their mash-up of reggae and Latin groove.

Each member of the band brings something different to the table with their diverse cultural backgrounds. The sextuplet includes Bruno Mendez, lead singer and bassist of Peruvian descent who loves all Latin music and is considered to be the one who supplies “el sabor,” the sassy Cuban chica, Vivian Fernandez who is the “ying” to Bruno’s “yang,” Mikey Campillo the bands high energy Cuban guitarist who’s band members describe as “the spirit of Jimi Hendrix with the balls of Tony Montana,” Numa Fernandez the Argentinean with attitude and banging out beats with “dangerous flare and style to spare,” Chris “el gringo” Richards the trumpet player blowing that brass and mixing it up with jazzy tunes and Boston trombone player, Greg Genova bringing the bone to the band.

This eclectic mix gives Araka that unique flavor that makes them a band to look out for. When asked to describe their style of music they said, “It’s hard to describe it, we do pretty much a little bit of everything. We use our backgrounds to bring that reggae mixed with a little bit of Ska and some Salsita.”

This great group of friends seems to have no problems when it comes to working together. “When we write music we don’t even think about it. There’s no formula to it. We come together and make magic.” To call them friends would be an understatement, they resemble a family as Vivian gives Mikey a playful hit on the shoulder, hugs him and calls him, “my brother.” Believe it or not, Araka was formed two years ago during a jam session on South Beach. Guitarist Mikey noticed that Bruno who at the time was a back-up singer for another band “was stealing the show.” Mikey encouraged Bruno to become lead singer, “you’re the front man, you have to be singer.” They started jamming together until everything eventually fell into place and they decided to start working and making music. Bruno adds, “We want everyone to enjoy our music and to start grooving with it and we definitely like to be with the people and do music for the people.”

The band will be featured on an upcoming reality show on Playboy’s Lifestyle TV scheduled to air by the end of August. The show, which is called “Recycled Blues”, follows the married couple, Numa and Vivian, as they manage their life, their band and their vintage clothing, store, Recycled Blues on Washington Ave. and 15th. The store has been named one of “South Beaches best local secrets.” The band is also finishing their EP, promoting and they plan to start touring soon. Although they are mainly Spanish right now, their music is so catchy it provides a groove and flavor everyone can enjoy. You can check them out on Myspace.com/arakamusic and keep an eye out for their EP, which will be available on iTunes in the next couple of months.
- RumBum.com


"blistering guitar licks meet laid back reggae grooves before taking off on flight in a hopped up skankfest worthy of the most severely tweaked then going to some swinging salsa. It's all there, somehow colliding in perfect harmony. "
- New Times


"blistering guitar licks meet laid back reggae grooves before taking off on flight in a hopped up skankfest worthy of the most severely tweaked then going to some swinging salsa. It's all there, somehow colliding in perfect harmony. "
- New Times


"Araka's M.O. is simple enough, a reggae hybrid laced with Latin flavors ,then delivered with big band aplomb and a whole lot of soul. Okay, so it's not that simple. But it doesn't need to be. It just needs to kick ass. Which is does."
- New Times


Discography

Araka just released it's self titled debut EP on iTunes, Amazon, eMusic and several other download sites. "Bailando" has played on Miami's MEGA 94.9 radio station.

Photos

Bio

The word Araka is Spanish slang for “watch out.” This is the best name for a group of talented musicians that have been taking on the Miami, FL music scene with their mash-up of Latin groove, ska, rock, and reggae.

Each member of the band brings something different to the table with their diverse cultural backgrounds. The sextuplet includes Bruno Mendez, lead singer and bassist of Peruvian descent, Mikey Campillo, the bands high energy Cuban guitarist who’s band members describe as having “the spirit of Jimi Hendrix with the balls of Tony Montana,” Peruvian drummer Anthony Verastegui, Chris “el gringo” Richards from Kansas City on trumpet, Boston trombone player, Greg Genova, and Peruvian percussionist Cesar Hermoza round out the band.

This eclectic mix gives Araka that unique flavor that makes them a band to look out for. When asked to describe their style of music they said, “It’s hard to describe it, we do pretty much a little bit of everything but it's definitely on the Latin tip. We use our backgrounds to bring that reggae mixed with a little bit of ska and some salsita.”

This great group of friends seems to have no problems when it comes to working together. “When we write music we don’t even think about it. There’s no formula to it. We come together and this magical musical process occurs.” To call them friends would be an understatement because they more resemble a family. Araka was formed five years ago during a jam session on South Beach. Guitarist Mikey noticed that Bruno, who at the time was a back-up singer for another band, “was stealing the show.” Mikey encouraged Bruno to become a lead singer, and the two of them started playing together with different drummers on open mic nights and Bruno began to write material for songs. After a few open mic nights, Chris walked in with his trumpet and was dragged onto stage. Greg randomly joined the group when Mikey found him at a University of Miami party. Anthony joined the group when they were auditioning for a new drummer and Cesar rounded things out when he sat in with the band and never left. Bruno adds, “We want everyone to enjoy our music and to start grooving with it and we definitely like to be with the people and do music for the people.”
Although they are mainly Spanish right now, their music is so catchy it provides a groove and flavor everyone can enjoy.