San Diego/Argentina Big Band Todo Mundo Release “Conexion”

| October 1, 2013 | 0 Comments


Santiago Orozco and Todo Mundo remember their music roots.

Santiago Orozco and Todo Mundo remember their music roots.

Not many bands I’ve ever heard of started in Argentina and then picked up again in San Diego, made a big mark here and went on to build a following around the world. But few bands have the drive of Todo Mundo or the vision of its leader, singer and rhythm guitarist Santiago Orozco. Led by the Colombian-born, Argentine-raised Orozco, Todo Mundo is a San Diego-based six-piece band that blends pop, reggae, and rock with not-so-subtle hints of Caribbean and Latin influences. Recognized for “Best World Music Band” and “Best World Music Album” by the San Diego Music Awards, Todo Mundo is also comprised of members from Israel, Venezuela, Toronto, and New Jersey. The group’s tight focus and energy burst out of its second album, “Conexion,” which will be released on October 15. “Reggae, samba and rhumba influence us a lot,” Orozco explains. “They draw from all that, taking in sounds from across the Caribbean and Latin America, but we have this style that’s organic.”

It’s a sound that uniquely Todo Mundo, what they call “world fusion,” whether on the catchy Latin pop of “Male Male,” the Jamaican influence that surrounds “Flying In The Air” or the warm breeze blowing through “La Calle.” They distil the music into a delicious groove that’s made for dancing, but even more, the lyrics, both in Spanish and English, are very positive and uplifting. It’s a Todo Mundo trademark. “I like to write things with meaning,” Orozco says, “profound things. I like to talk about life. The writing is important; it’s the mission of the band. We want to share that we’re all the same. When we die we’re all going to the same place.”

Todo Mundo approaches their music with passion. The group first formed in 2009, by Orozco in Argentina. “I wanted the guys to come to the US but they couldn’t get visas,” he recalls. Undaunted, he moved to California, settling in San Diego, determined to keep the band’s flame burning bright. “When I came I didn’t know anyone. I didn’t have an album, I couldn’t get gigs. So I played the farmer’s market here and on the street. People jammed with me and we made connections. We started off as a trio but I always wanted a big band.” Those connections would eventually lead to the current “Conexion,” and band lineup of Santiago Orozco; Meir Shitrit (Israel); Stephen Gentillalli (San Diego, CA); Matt Bozzone (New Jersey); Eduardo Canelon (Venezuela); and Matt Davies (Toronto, Canada/San Diego).

You can see that for the recording of “Conexion” that’s exactly what they became, a very big band, drawing on guests from a number of San Diego bands to create the playful, high-energy sound. This was Orozco’s ultimate, years-long vision come to life. “It took three years to get here. It shows a process, an evolution of our sound. This was what I heard in my head. Things take time. Everyone came at the right time to do their part. We knew we had to keep going. It’s music from the soul, from the heart. That’s our language.”

Over the last four years, Todo Mundo has built an audience, one that’s expanded enormously beyond San Diego, where they’re one of the city’s biggest bands, with a local Best World Music Album award for their debut,” Organic Fire.”

“Live, it’s non-stop, high-energy. We try to connect, to make people move, to make them happy. Perhaps strangely, most of our audience isn’t Latino, they’re pretty much from everywhere – Europe, Brazil. It’s always very diverse,” Orozco offered.

The album is also a reminder of their acoustic beginnings, harking back to the days Orozco drew crowds when busking on street corners in San Diego. It’s very basic and seemingly unpolished. But as with the rest of the band’s music, it’s deeply felt, and sincere. This isn’t their job, it’s their calling. “It’s important for us to play with diversity,” Orozco says. “The whole reason we do music is to touch people and to draw them together and into the moment and feel present. No matter where we come from, what we do, what we believe or what we think, we are all the same.” For sounds samples of Todo Mundo, see

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Category: Local News, Music

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