The ARAYA-ORTA LATIN JAZZ QUARTET was a group formed by two pairs of brothers: Michael Orta (Piano), Nicky Orta (bass), Ramses Araya (percussion), and Carlomagno Araya (drums). The chemistry shown on stage by these four artists was truly outstanding, not only due to their level of musicianship and because they share the same blood but also because they have a history that goes back 20 years.
It was in 1990 when the Orta brothers went to perform at the International Festival of the Arts (FIA) in Costa Rica. After meeting the Araya brothers, they played together for the first time. The following year the Orta brothers helped Carlomagno attend the prestigious jazz schools in Miami. Since then, the Arayas and the Ortas have shared a relationship beyond music. They shared a close friendship and professional collaboration, evident in their music-making. For their official debut, the quartet returned to Costa Rica to perform at the 2010 edition of the festival they had been part of 20 years ago.
Together, the members of this quartet hold an impressive list of touring and recording credits, as well as multiple Grammy-winning awards and many Grammy nominations. They have worked with the biggest and most diverse names in the industry, such as Randy Brecker, Michael Brecker, Conrad Herwig, Adam Nussbaum, Dave Weckl, Eddie Daniels, Eddie Gomez, James Moody, Toots Thielmans, Nestor Torres, Arturo Sandoval, Larry Coryell, Dave Valentine, Mike Stern, Chick Corea, Paquito D'Rivera, Giovanni Hidalgo, Claudia Acuna, Danilo Perez, Sammy Figueroa, Richard Bona, Toquinho, Ruben Blades, Julio Iglesias, Engelbert Humperdinck, David Bisbal, Alexander Pires, Gloria Estefan, Alejandro Fernandez, Avishai Cohen, Grupo Irakere, Strunz and Farah, Juan Gabriel, Jhoan Sebastian, Daniela Mercury, Oloddum, Alejandro Lerner, Boca Libre, Ilan Chester, Chayanne, Tania Libertad, Alejandra Guzman, and Armando Manzanero, among others.Having attended some of the most reputable schools in the world, such as Berklee College of Music, University of Miami's Jazz Program, Miami Dade Community College, and ISA (Instituto Superior de las Artes, Havana, Cuba), the brothers have an expansive educational background. Their background and many years of experience teaching at major university programs and clinics worldwide have helped them become highly sought-after educators.
The project, as conceived, came to a forced interruption after the unfortunate passing of Mike Orta in 2018.
KILLER!!!...The ARAYA ORTA LATIN JAZZ QUARTET´s "Live at Teatro Nacional" is an amazing record. It shows virtuosic technical proficiency, and a most impressive musical chemistry...Since the group is made up of two sets of brothers, Mike Orta, piano, and Nicky Orta, Bass; and Ramses Araya, Percussion, and Carlomagno Araya, Drums, the group thinks as one entity. I´ve known Mike and Nicky for many years. They have played on many records and concerts I´ve produced in the past, so I was well aware of their incredible musicianship, but I was truly excited with the pairing of the Araya brothers who added another level, like a Ferrari racing car shifting into a high gear and roaring off...they are burning up the road in this exciting live recording! With the addition of the amazing Paquito D´Rivera and Diego Urcola on selected tracks, a new color is added to this groundbreaking rhythm section and the music takes the listener into new territory.