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Moods: Type: Experimental Latin: Salsa Metal/Punk: Punk Metal

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United States - California - SF

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Scott Brown

Born and raised in San Francisco’s Mission District, Scott Brown began his music studies on piano at the Community Music Center, where he attended from age 7 through age 11. This was the extent of his formal training. After developing interest in the San Francisco Punk Scene and switching instruments from piano to electric guitar in his teens, he played with Mission District punk band ‘Zona Roja’ from 1985 through 1989. Also during that time, (1988-1991) he experimented with the ‘Improvisational Rock’ genre with a group called ‘Rula’, on electric guitar and percussion. The group was a trio (with drumset and bass) and would play songs totally improvised, as well as a few arranged songs. At the beginning of the session, the only guidelines would be key signature and tempo. However, even these things may have changed throughout the tune.

Around this time, after exploring diversity in music, he developed an interest in Latin Jazz and Salsa. Attending various workshops and classes by such professionals as Carlos Frederico continued to spark an interest. However, after seeing Yomo Toro play live at a Mission District Street Fair, he knew that the Cuatro was the instrument for him. With the Cuatro came interest in Puerto Rico’s Musica Jibara, and its numerous masters, such as Ramito, Chuito and Nieves Quintero. This led to the desire to start a Salsa Orquesta, and Orquesta Surco Nuevo was born, formed along with master timbalero Orlando Morales and other key musicians. Scott Brown bucked the San Francisco Salsa Scene trends of the time (mid-90’s Salsa Romantica) by performing Salsa Classica or Salsa Dura at many of the scene’s clubs at the time. As the musical director/leader, he composed numerous original compositions and contributed new arrangements to old school Salsa standards. As the Booking Manager, he booked the band in various venues such as San Francisco’s Club Cocomo, San Jose’s Jazz Festival and Pittsburg’s Seafood Festival. Orquesta Surco Nuevo enjoyed a run from 1993-2005, released their self-titled CD in 1999 (with Scott Brown producing, composing, arranging all original material, providing CD Artistic Design and overseeing all recording sessions with his record label, Ahau Records), and then was disbanded when he relocated to Hayward.

Working with various other groups for a couple of years, Scott Brown finally decided to begin another Orquesta de Salsa. So, along with long-time collaborator Orlando Morales, Orquesta Salsa Dura was born in May of 2007. This group, emphasizing hard-driving Salsa Dura with strong improvisation/soloing from all members is always an exciting show to listen to as well as dance. Salsa Dura released its own CD on Ahau Records, “En Cada Barrio Revolucion” (Ahau Records CD02) with 10 more original compositions by Scott Brown. Although successful, another move prompted the disbandment of this group as well in 2013 when Scott moved to Pittsburg, CA.

During the time with Orquesta Salsa Dura, Scott Continued to perform in smaller Latin Jazz Combos, including trios, quartets, and quintets mostly under the name “Scott Brown’s Latin Jazz Descarga”, or simply the Scott Brown Trio (or whatever size of the combo). These performances continue to this day, and a potential release of material, studio and live recordings may be available soon on Ahau Records.

Along with long-time collaborator and innovator Andy Woodhouse (bass), Scott Brown hooked up with musicians John Rodriguez (drumset) and Jim Gordon (sax) to start an experimental Latin Jazz group. The group began sessions in mid-2011 in the newly established home of Ahau Records’ SB Studios in South San Francisco. Starting off with covering standards such as “Afro-Blue” and “A Love Supreme” but turning them into vehicles of wild and off-the-grid improvisation, the group found its direction in free-form improvisation with elements of fusion and avant-garde jazz. From 2011 to 2013, this band, dubbed the “San Francisco Latin Jazz Society” made many recordings at SB Studios, three of which have been released on Ahau Records. Although still available for recording sessions, Scott’s relocation to Pittsburg has slowed the output of recordings although many still remain in the vault.

In Pittsburg, Scott resolved to finish the myriad number of projects left undone over the years. This resulted in the new release “Salsa for Punks and Metalheads”. This experimental CD attempts to combine the styles of Heavy Metal and Punk Rock with Salsa and was released in 2015.

Look for future releases from Ahau Records coming up soon!