Fredo Ortiz took the time to talk with us as he returned to his high school, Don Bosco Technical Institute in Rosemead, CA. Ortiz talked about when he began learning to play the drums to high school and his career that has taken him all over the world.
Originally from Gardena, California, Ortiz started to beat the drums in 3rd grade. In high school he joined the school marching band while he made a name for himself playing drums in a popular L.A. punk band â€“ Los Villians. Fredo began experimenting with latin percussion, where his natural talent was apparent. He joined the latin-ska group Yeska, which paved new ground in itsâ€™ jazz, latin jazz, afro-Cuban jazz and ska fusion. He later joined Ozomatli, another groundbreaking L.A. band, which featured Fredo in their EP and first self-titled record.
Ortiz founded his first solo project BONGOLOIDZ in 2011, and has been performing a myriad of live Bongoloidz shows at L.A.â€™s hip, hot venues. The Bongoloidz show consists of on-the-spot musical innovation in edgy live loops as well as his latest put-together tunes, from punk to cumbia to hip hop, with Fredo performing on a wide variety of instruments.
Below you can see the interview we conducted inside the Don Bosco Technical Institute Band Room.