Los Rumberos de Massachusetts to Open for Juanes

Lesley Mahoney
March 15, 2013
Photo by Tatiana Setty
Photo by Daniel Flores

From performing on Boston rooftops and streets to gigging at Berklee and city venues, Los Rumberos de Massachusetts has been spreading its trademark blend of flamenco rumba, reggae, and Latin rock across campus and beyond. This month, the trio of Berklee students has impressive spring break plans: opening for Colombian musical sensation Juanes, a Latin Grammy and Grammy award-winning singer-songwriter and guitarist, at the Cumbre Tajín 2013 festival in Veracruz, Mexico, an annual five-day festival around the spring equinox.  

For Los Rumberos de Massachusetts—featuring Angel Cespedes and Luis De la Isla on guitar and Paul Sefchovich on percussion, and all three on vocals—the festival marks another opportunity for exposure to a large audience. Last spring, the band competed in New Wave, an American Idol-like contest held in Riga, Latvia. In addition to Mexico and Latvia, they've performed internationally in Moscow and Madrid. 

For the band members, who were raised in Mexico, the festival is a chance to peform in a country that holds special meaning. 

"Playing at Cumbre Tajín became an unprecedented opportunity for us to get exposure in our country while we celebrate and honor the 'Totonaca' culture, which contributes uniquely to Mexico's cultural richness," said Sefchovich.

Los Rumberos will kick off the festival March 21, opening for Juanes and Ziggy Marley. Other festival acts include the Pet Shop Boys, Regina Spektor, the Smashing Pumpkins, Julieta Venegas, and Calvin Harris.

While busy with rehearsing for the festival, Los Rumberos has benefited from some Berklee faculty expertise. Said Sefchovich: "Rebecca Perricone gave us an express one-hour meeting, during which she pointed out key elements that later boosted our performance and opened up our creativity."

The band members count this among the valuable advice they're gathering as they prepare for what's sure to be an unforgettable experience.