(Chocolocochon Bolsillo Productions)
Boricua multi-talented Choco Orta returns to the airwaves and dance floors via her latest recording Choco Swing, a production that marks her artistic debut as a producer. The talented singer/percussionist/dancer and actress continues to develop, excel and shine artistically throughout most of this new recording. Choco opens her dance party with the title track Choco Swing (a Gino Meléndez composition arranged by Ricky Zayas), an upbeat dance-friendly ditty displaying her savvy sonera skills and percussion talents, taking on a flavorful conga solo. She pays tribute female warriors on the self-penned composition Homenaje a las Soneras, featuring a commendable arrangement by bassist Máximo Rodríguez. Perhaps Choco should have showcased an all-female ensemble on this selection to reinforce the girl power. The production was recorded in Puerto Rico under the musical direction of Rei Peña, and featuring the talents of piano of Willie Sotelo, William "Kachiro" Thompson (congas), Tito De Gracia (bongo/timbal), and Pedro Pérez (bass). Featured on choruses are Jerry Rivas, Henry Santiago and Rei Peña. Other favorite tracks include La Voz del Pueblo, and Cuidate de la Lengua. Overall, this latest by Choco is a powerful musical expression from a veteran and complete artist. Chocolicious.
-Rudy Mangual, Latin Beat Magazine
Chocolocochon Bosillo Productions
Choco Orta never ceases to amaze us: here is a killer capital "S" salsa project, directed by the great Rei Peña, which reaffirms her position as the top Salsera-Sonera to contend with, at the very least within the US and Puerto Rico. Peña's team features the ultimate rhythm players in PR: piano Willie Sotelo, conguero William "Kachitro" Thompson, timbalero Rafael "Tito" De Gracia and bassist Pedro Pérez. And the not-too-shabby coro section fills out with Jerry Rivas, Henry Santiago and Rei Peña. Just listen "Cuidate de la Lengua," or "Homenaje A Las Soneras" to get a sense of Orta's heart of fire ...a sonera truly inspired. Since Celia's death I really can't think of anyone who has really stepped up. Granted, they are big shoes to fill. Choco, we like your resume: Go for it."
-Bruce Polin, Descarga.com
'Choco' Orta - best show at the Conga Room this year
February 22, 2010, Dena Burroughs, The Examiner,
‘Choco’ Orta, the Salsa singer originally from Santurce, Puerto Rico, and a current resident of New York City, performed at the Conga Room at L.A. Live last Saturday.
In what was arguably the best Salsa concert so far this year at this venue, the contra-alto vocalist performed songs out of her Ahora Mismo CD, including ‘Por Accidente’ ... and the well-known song ‘Ay Jose’.
New York Times
Some Shouts, Some Growls and a Salsa Homage
May 15, 2009, By Ben Ratliff
The Puerto Rican salsa singer Choco Orta has a rich laugh and a nail-gun voice on high notes; as a performer she’s an outrageous flirt and an excellent improviser with a trademark tag line that somehow doesn’t grow tiresome (“chocolocochón!”). What more do you want? Exactly: a new record. “Ahora Mismo ...” (Camínalo/Sony Music Latin), Ms. Orta’s first since 2001, is produced in part by another great sonero, Gilberto Santa Rosa, who sings in the chorus during the montuno sections. Mostly it’s a casual homage to female singers from salsa and Cuban music: Celia Cruz, La Lupe and Graciela (the popularizer of “Ay Jose,” included here — a song of seduction that matches Ms. Orta’s personality as a performer). She makes everything hers, including a beautiful song of more recent vintage by Pedro Luis Ferrer, “Marido Majadero” (“Naughty Husband”). And the band, a traditional salsa setup with a five-man horn section and three percussionists — but no drum set — makes hard, elegant Latin swing.
El Nuevo Dia
06 Febrero 2009
Lanza nuevo disco con temas de Graciela, La Lupe y Celia Cruz.
El próximo 17 de marzo debe estar disponible el nuevo disco “Ahora mismo... Choco Orta”. Suministrada Por Jaime Torres Torres / email@example.com Ninguna fémina podía grabar como Choco Orta el repertorio de las cubanas Graciela, La Lupe y Celia Cruz seleccionado por Gilberto Santa Rosa para el disco de una cantante de salsa.
Así lo confesó el Caballero de la Salsa en su encuentro con Choco, acontecido hace poco más de un lustro en el camerino del teatro La Perla de Ponce, donde actuó junto a Luisito Vigoreaux en “La Pareja Dispareja”.
Choco Orta 'Ahora Mismo...'
CD (Sony Music Caminalo 211215), Released 2009;
Produced by Gilberto Santa Rosa Y Charlie Donato
Editor's Pick: Here is some Serious Salsa, brother. Singer Choco Orta has fanned the flames of the genre, big time. Produced by Gilberto Santa Rosa and Charlie Donato, this one is a salsa dancer's dream record. Orta takes on the classic "Ay José," made popular by Graciela with Machito's orchestra. And on the fiery "Cúcala," the Ismael Rivera classic, she is joined by Moncho Rivera, Ismael's nephew. At times, Orta's energy can only be compared to the legendary La Lupe, and it is no accident that she decides to end the cd with La Lupe's "Por Accidente," a smokin' finale if there ever was one. With Gilberto Santa Rosa, Adalberto Santiago, Charlie Donato and Henry Santiago as coroistas. Luis Marin on piano, bassist Johnny Torres and Sammy Garcia on congas. An instant classic. A big DJ-Alert and... Very Highly Recommended. (BP)