Oakland's Erick Santero Makes Music Without Borders
The musical styles of Erick Santero, an artist, DJ and producer, reflect the travel routes of his Salvadoran father and Guatemalan mother. Moving between New York, New Orleans and his current home in Oakland, California, Santero's travels have afforded him a plethora of diverse and cultural music styles. He is part of an eclectic community of loose-knit and far-flung artists he refers to as "Latin Sound Systems." Santero sees them as a kind of new generation of roving sonideros he loved as a kid.
"I don't really believe in borders, whether they be musical or geographic or nationalistic," he explains. One of his typical tracks, "Agua del Rio," features Santero, along with rappers from Cuba and R&B singers from the San Francisco Bay Area. The track also includes the bachata style of guitar, which originates in the Dominican Republic; Santero learned this style of music from Dominicans in New York City. In 2005 Santero was noted as Best New Artist by Batanga Magazine for his first album, and received accolades from Remezcla's in 2008 as a Top Ten artist, and in 2009, Santero was a featured guest on NPR's "All Things Considered."
Santero has current residencies at Luka's Taproom & Lounge in Oakland, Little Baobab in the Mission District, and has begun a new monthly party called MOVEMENT at Legionnaire in Oakland. With the digital publishing and promotions company called Baylando Records, Santero's new exclusive vinyl record label, "Santero Music" infuses a masterful blend of contemporary urban Latino flavors with traditional sounds of cumbia, salsa, and ocha (sacred Yoruba-influenced) music. Santero is constantly touring, and performing while exploring new ways to fulfill his musical destiny.