The Brand
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The Brand

Band Alternative Pop


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos


The best kept secret in music


This band has no press


The Brand EP (2004)
Grenadine LP (2005)
Photographs Single/ Hotel Room B-side (2006)


Feeling a bit camera shy


Omar's English teacher mama rubbed off her mastery of the English language on her son. The boy can write. His crystal clear voice was a bonus. Leo took guitar lessons with his pops. The boy can play. He mastered all kinds of techniques and styles reaching back into his Colombian roots and adopting the energetic punk sounds of the new country. Juan's pops played the guitar, but didn't teach him. Juan's uncle could sing beautifully, but the nephew didn't inherit that either.

Juan had one thing going for him: he loved music. Often skipping school to "manage" his high school buddies' band, The Psychedellic Lullabies, he rubbed elbows with musicians throughout his high school and what should have been his college years. But osmosis didn't teach Juan a single chord or a basic drum beat.

After some interesting twists of fate, Juan befriended Omar. Omar, on the musical rebound after his band, The Inside's breakup, encouraged Juan to get serious about playing the drums. Despite barely making enough to money to eat, Juan hired a professional tutor to teach him the basics.

With Jorge Gonzalez originally on guitar, the trio got going. They quickly became a local fav in their beloved Hialeah (Miami's armpit). They took their name from a conceptual product Omar developed for a marketing class. A stellar graphic designer, Omar came up with a branding strategy, logo and overall look for the band.

With Omar's graphic design prowess, Juan's artistic abilities (the boy could draw) and Jorge's knack for photography, they developed some of the most creative advertising vehicles for their gigs: "Be Mine" hand-stamped heart candies for a Valentine's Day gig, rolling paper for a "legalize pot" festival and sidewalk chalk drawings.
They also recorded, produced, designed, released and distributed their first EP and LP. Their homemade video for their first popular single, "Xmas Day," received critical acclaim and saw airtime on Mun2 (Telemundo) TV.

Their quirky gimmicks would have done little for them if the music sucked. But it didn't. The staff of Miami's weekly alternative newspaper, The New Times, voted The Brand "Best Pop Band" in 2004 and then "Best Rock Band" in 2005.

Leo occasionally joined The Brand while on tour up and down the east coast, and finally became an integral part of the band once Jorge left to pursue a solo project.

Despite several offers to get signed, The Brand finally got serious when a London-based indie label courted them, flew them to London and had them showcase at two well-attended venues. Unable to reach an agreement, The Brand opted to walk away and instead decided to pack their bags and leave the Miami alternative music scene for New York.

Though they'd played CBGB's, Arlene Grocery and many other venues in the city, they debuted as New Yorkers at Piano's on Friday, July 7th.

In many ways, the boys of Hialeah are "do or die." Luckily for New York City and eventually Boston, Hartford, Newark, Providence, Philadelphia, DC, (and then hopefully Chicago, LA, San Francisco, London, Barcelona, Tokyo, etc.) dying is not an option.