Baile An Salsa turn to public for album funds

Baile An Salsa
Baile An Salsa

Groove Tube with Jimi McDonnell – tribunegroove@live.ie

With their trad and salsa fusion going from strength to strength, Baile An Salsa play Monroe’s Live on Saturday August 12. Five years after forming in Galway City, this 10 piece band will be recording their second album in September. To finance the project, the band are using the crowdfunding site Fund It for the first time. When the Tribune talks to Baile’s percussionist Brian Ferguson, there is 43 days left for them to get the backing they need.

“We’re two weeks into the launch of it now, we’ve already hit 35% of our target,” Brian says. “Which is great – we’re just about ahead of where we’d like to be right now. We’re happy about that, we’re brightly optimistic so far!”

Baile An Salsa have pulled off an impressive feat in securing the services of Costa Rican producer Walter Flores, whose skills in the studio have won him five Grammys.  That came about through the efforts of bandleader and singer Andres Martorell.

“Andres made contact with Walter, and asked if he’d heard of us. Not only had he heard of us, but he was very excited about the project. It was right up his own street, and he offered then and there and said ‘I’d love to get involved.’ It was a shot in the dark, just a phone call.”

“ I have to hand it Andres, he’s a man of ambition and vision,” Brian adds. “His motto is often ‘if you want to do well, work with the best.’ That’s exactly why he contacted Walter Flores in the first place, he didn’t really expect him to come onboard – but that’s how it happened.”

So the studio is booked, the producer is hired and Baile An Salsa are off to the Philadelphia Folk Festival – which is five days after their Galway gig. It’s all go for them, at the moment.

“We feel ready now,” Brian says “When you put together something like this, especially when you get involved with fusions, your initial instinct is to superimpose one genre on top of the other and see what happens. That’s what we did initially, we knew the Latin drumming would work with certain reels in trad music.”

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.