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Ozomatli, LA’s beloved Afro-Latin-and-beyond style mashers have been delivering their vibrant and original music world–wide for the past 10 years. The multi–racial crew won Grammy gold this year for Best Latin Rock/Alternative Album of the Year for the much-lauded CD, Street Signs.

Released in June 2004 to rave reviews, Street Signs (Concord Records) bears a new Middle Eastern influence born out in typical OZO style, mixing it with their trademark blend of hip hop and Latin styles. The Washington Post declared that the album is “a microcosm of 21st century America, a 50–minute travelogue through our backyards and barrios.”

Ozomatli, born of a make–shift collective to raise money for the Los Angeles Peace and Justice Center, embarks on another whirlwind tour this Spring, making stops in Mexico City with Santana and Las Vegas for the BMI Awards. In May, they begin a tour with GRAMMY winners Los Lonely Boys. “Music is the key to every culture, the beginning of an understanding,” says the band’s trumpet player and co-vocalist Asdru Sierra.

The tragic impact of cancer is all too real for Raul Pacheco, Ozomatli’s lead vocalist and guitarist, who recently experienced the loss of a close relative to this terrible disease. “All of us at Ozomatli feel privileged to join forces with PADRES, EVA LONGORIA and LA LEY in support of this critical effort. We cannot allow our children to lose Hope in the fight against childhood cancer.”

Ozomatli is: Jiro Yamaguchi, percussion; Wil-Dog Abers, bass, vocals; Justin Poree, percussion, MC, vocals; Asdrubal Sierra, trumpet, lead vocals; Raul Pacheco, guitar, lead vocals; Ulises Bella, tenor sax, clarinet, vocals; Mario Calire, drums; Rene ‘Spinobi’ Dominguez, turntablist; Jabu, MC; Sheffer Bruton, trombone.

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