My Aventura Story
The year was 2002, when I heard Aventura’s song “Obsession” ( they were literally unknown then), I could NOT believe it. I WAS AMAZED! and said to myself “MY GOD” this group is going to be BIG!! because when I heard them singing the lyrics and music of Obesession” I saw in my mind the representation of a new generation of US Latinos through their music, the they effortlessly and magically fused bachata with elements of Hip Hop, R&B, and even Rock. As mentioned earlier, I KNEW they were special and were going to be big, I must confess, I did now know they ( and later on Romeo ) would be this BIG!!
Anthony Santos (artistic name Romeo), the lead singer used hip street slang in English while signing in Spanish with a New York flair, words such as: “ Let me find out” and others, and in doing so was able to be even more relevant with bi-cultural Latinos and later, main stream. Romeo and the Aventura band members, who are all related, followed their love of Bachata music even while being born and raised in the South Bronx. They grew up listening and enjoying different music from Hip Hop to punk rock, yet they end up playing bachata music and revolutionizing it, to where it is today. A global music, that has crossed countries, continents and cultures, selling out stadiums throught the world and unifying people, in the way that only music can.
In case you did not know, Johnny Marines. is a recent recipient of The Latino Trendsetter Awards produced by LatinTRENDS at this year’s event back in May and Romeo graced our second cover at the very beginning of our history back in 2002 when this the magazine was known as Dominican Times and later on with the whole group as Aventura. See below.
Aventura and Anthony Santos changed the game, simply by working hard doing what they love and in doing so they discovered what they most likely knew before anyone else, that they had talent! When we broke Aventura in 2002 and in 2003 with their first covers Bachata was still considered ghetto… music for the underclass by the upper class and elite of the Dominican Republic. Aventura made bachata cool, sexy and accepted. They took this music that was born in the bordellos (prostitution houses) of The DR and its dark but colorful past to new heights. To this day Bachata music is still referred to by many Dominicans as “corta vena” (wrist cutter) and “La musica del amargue” because of it’s emotional lyrics and themes, such as; “she left me” “she no longer loves me” “I’m poor, sad and ugly”
Batcahata’s other nickname is music of sadness-music of blues. Lately and in part because of Romeos talent and movement, its lyrics have gotten a bit more refined, but Romeo has been able to keep the essence of the genre in place. There are now others that have followed his lead and they are shining in their own light as modern day/ urban bachata artist such as: Prince Royce and Leslie Grace. Of course, we can’t forget some original bachata legends like : Anthony Santos, Luis Vargas, Yoscar Sarante, Joe Veras, Frank Reyes, Raulin Rodriguez, El Torito, and Juan Luis Guerra, who is not known as a bachata artist per se, however, he does have some big bachata hits.
Thanks to Romeo Santos and Aventura and to their manager Johnny Marines Bachata has not only lived on and grown beyond its humble beginnings but will keep soaring to new heights, not as much because of Roc Nation Latino (Jhonny Marines is now the president and Romeo the CEO of JAY-Z’s Roc Nation Latino) click here to read about it, and that is a great thing! but because bachata music has potential to keep growing and gaining listeners and fans because it’s mellow, aggrieve, soft, loud, you can fall in love over it and fall out of love with it. you can dance to it, you can chill to it and you can sing to it. Bachata has it all and the world over is loving it. Thanks again Romeo, Johnny, Aventura and all that came before him, bachata will live on beyond Dominican Republic.