It may certainly be said that Aventura “Broke the Rules” – in almost every way! They are the first “Bachata-boy band,” the first band to fuse the essence of bachata with R & B and hip hop and other traditional American music styles, the first band to perform in English, Spanish and “Spanglish.” Aventura is also the first bachata group to feature songs that address serious life situations and to delight fans in the process.
Because the Santos boys are barely out of their teens, it seems incredible that they struggled for eight years before exploding on the scene in the summer of 2002. And their struggle was not merely a physical one where they endured years of sleepless nights on the road. The true barrier faced by the group was the nature of the traditional bachata audience, a conservative audience with a one-minded view of how the music should sound. After all, on a scene dominated by traditionalist stars such as Anthony Santos and rising romantic minstrels such as Zacarías Ferreira, Aventura’s music was truly radical.
Their unique style was embraced by young people in New York much in the way rock & roll captivated teenage audiences in generations past. It also changed the face of Bachata forever. As “Aventura fever” spread around the world like wild fire, concerned music business executives hit the conference room to discuss plans for new projects.
The members of Aventura are Anthony Santos (lead singer and featured composer), Leny Santos (musical producer and guitarist), Max Santos (bassist and rap artist) and Henry Santos Jeter (singer and composer).
Anthony “Romeo” Santos, lead singer and featured composer, was born on June 21st, 1981 in the Bronx, New York to a Puerto Rican mother and a Dominican father. At twelve years of age Anthony became a member of the church choir. Around the same time, he commenced his love affair with Bachata, long before the style became so explosively popular. A natural songwriter, Anthony’s early compositions were steeped in the tradition of legendary artists such as Blas Duran. Undoubtedly Anthony’s sweet, soulful voice has played a key role in the group’s success. However, Anthony’s songwriting is unique – progressive, poetic and down-to-earth; he is like a Bronx version of Juan Luis Guerra. Spinning tales of the tough reality of growing up in the concrete jungle, Anthony’s tunes captivate audiences from all walks of life, young and old.
Leny Santos is the group’s guitarist and musical producer/arranger. Born in the Bronx, New York on October 24th, 1979 Leny fell in love with music at age 15. Like most kids his age, his music of choice was hip hop. However, with Dominican parents, Bachata was a permanent household staple - the soulful twang of the “requinto” always in the background, day and night. It was only logical that Leny would experiment by blending his two favorite musical styles – bachata and hip hop. It is Leny who created unique the Aventura sound; his excellence and creativity as a producer are evident from the first bar of any tune on Aventura’s albums.
Max Santos, the band’s bass player, was born in 1982 in the South Bronx. He started playing at 12 years of age, borrowing a bass at school. At home he collaborated with his brother Leny experimenting with rhythms in duo, bass and guitar. Max was always a rock lover and thus brings elements of rock into Aventura’s sound. Max is also an excellent rap artist and is featured on the latest album LOVE & HATE on a track entitled “Don’t Waste My Time.”
Santos Jeter, singer and composer, was born on September 15,
1979 in Moca, Dominican Republic. As a youngster Henry was already a
diehard music fanatic. He moved with his family to New York at age 14,
where he continued to develop his musical skills. He subsequently joined
a band called Los Teenagers with his cousin Anthony. Henry is the group’s
comedian, delighting the audience with spontaneous antics on stage.
He is also a hard working business person with a myriad of creative
projects on the burner.
Other Links of Interest...
Aventura Concert in 2002