Get to Know: Tony & Cristy of Abrobeta
October 14, 2015
A band is only as good as the sum of its parts, and the two incredible pieces that make up Afrobeta are magic personified. Smurphio and Cuci Amador are not only some of the funnest musicians in the local music scene, they are two kind souls whose soul purpose in life is to create a musical party where everyone is invited. As welcoming as they are in person, their music shines equally as friendly.
Their upcoming album, Dream About You is dropping on the city hard this Saturday with the Mooncake Jam celebration featuring tunes from musical family members like Telekinetic Walrus, Jesse Jackson, Chantil Dukhart and more at the North Beach Bandshell. We sat down with the local legends and talked figure skating, songwriting, and the dreams behind their music. See it all below:
Prism: If your music could be described as a type of dream, how would the dream go?
Afrobeta: I wake up in the clouds way over the earth and I float looking down on the earth as it spins. I come down to visit any country or era that I want.
P: Tell us about Dream About You. What was different for you guys this time around?
A: Dream about you is a diverse album. Most sub genres of “electronica” are represented. There’s future r n b, electro pop, downtempo, ambient, trap, dubstep, glitch hop, nu disco, and even a ballad. We like them all.
P: How’s the creative process for you guys when you tackle a new song or album?
A: We like to write our songs on acoustic instruments first. Mainly piano and guitar but sometimes it could be cuatro, charango or some other native stringed instruments. Once the song takes shape we “electrify” them. It’s nice to have both versions of the songs. Maybe the next album will be all acoustic.
P: You recently performed live with the Nu Deco Ensemble, how was that?
A: IT WAS AMAZING!!! To hear our compositions performed by a 25 piece orchestra was heavenly. They’re so classy and modern. They’re gonna be responsible for keeping classical music relevant.
P: You guys have traveled the world and played on some pretty incredible stages. Any great stories or favorite performances?
A: My favorite performance in the last year was when we got hired a couple of months ago by a man who was gonna propose to his girlfriend. She is a fan of ours and saw a video we posted on Facebook performing a Celia Cruz song with our own twist. The plan was to pop out of the bushes and perform that song as he proposed. It was such a moving experience. Funny enough it was the shortest gig we’ve ever done.
P: How did you two meet?
A: We met at Jazid in 2006 at a Suenalo show.
P: Tony, was the fro always there?
T: Ive had the fro since 1994
P: How did both of you start dabbling in music?
Tony – my parents had a piano in the house and I started to play things by ear at the age of 5.
Cuci – I was always singing and dancing as a little girl. I guess I still am a little girl. Back in college, I joined a salsa ensemble. I guess that’s were it “really” started.
P: What or who has inspired you to do what you do?
A: Making people happy with our music is the biggest inspiration.
P: What’s the first thing you do when you get home after an exhausting performance?
A: Put our equipment away and walk the dogs.
P: If you weren’t making music for a living, what would you be doing instead?
Cuci – Figure skater
Smurphio – team mascot
Make sure to RSVP to the Mooncake Jam here!