My name is, Andres Fonseca Alfonso, born in Bogota, Colombia. I’ve been playing music since I was 8 years old, started with piano lessons and soon after fell in love with percussion instruments, particularly Drum-set. After studying in different schools and private music lessons, I went on to study professionally in the music program at Universidad Sergio Arboleda, where I studied jazz & latin jazz drum-set performance, as well as Colombian percussion, composition and arranging.
In 2009, I was accepted at Berklee, & ever since my arrival, I dove into scene, playing and leading different projects. Making good use of my versatility as a musician, I’ve collaborated with important musical projects. The Colombian folkloric band La Babilla, was one of the first where I had the chance to play traditional Colombian percussion in different local festivals such as the 5to Encuentro Folklorico Latinoamericano, in Lynn, MA. The Boston Music Conference, in Boston and the New Bostonian Community Day, where the band received recognition from former Mayor of Boston Thomas M. Menino.
Soon after my arrival in Boston, I had the idea to form and lead a student club called, Colombianos @ Berklee. With this club we did several events around the College raising awareness about Colombian Culture, helping to demystify the old stigma of drug traffic and war that has surrounded my home country. Because of these events the club received support and grants from Berklee, support from the Colombian consulate in Boston as well as the Colombian student organizations in Harvard and MIT. This club is still active, currently led by new Colombian students at Berklee.
As an arranger and composer, I wrote original music for the therapeutic video called “Soltar Para Volar”, written by the renowned psychologist and author Dr. Gloria Sierra published by San Pablo publishing. Soltar Para Volar is a book and a video of 10 psychological therapies to re-establish emotional orders.
Furthermore in 2011 I wrote and performed arrangements of traditional Colombian Music for the Boston Latinamerican Orchestra, a chamber orchestra focused on performing traditional music in a “classical setting”, conducted by Andres Lopera.
Due to my enthusiasm for working in community, I formed and lead the band Unlimited Perception, a community of composers and performers. We have already recorded 2 albums and were invited to participate in renowned festivals such as Detroit International Jazz Festival (2013) y el Boston Arts Festival (2012).
Apart from that, I still work as a drummer and a sideman, since I my arrival at Boston I’ve recorded 8 albums raging from pop/rock singer songwriters to arabic/jazz fusion band with the Aliya Cycon Project and jazz/colombian llanera music with the Nicolas Castaneda Group, amongst others.
I’ve also had the pleasure of collaborating with Colombian artists that tour the US, like Maria Mulata, on her US tour in 2013 and Antonio Arnedo, when he performed at Berklee College of Music in 2012.
Currently, graduated with honors from Berklee with a dual major in Jazz Drum-set Performance and Contemporary Writing and Production; I’m getting ready to record my first solo album, that I plan to release in 2016. I also teach drum-set and piano at a local music school and at my home studio, while actively playing drum-set and percussion on different projects with shows on the Boston area and NYC, all while leading the band Unlimited Perception.
The road hasn’t been easy, but it has definitively been worth it. To follow one’s dreams and aspirations, sacrificing things to follow these dreams with hope and faith that it will pay off. Sometimes, even the form how we envisioned those dreams were going to take place also needs to be sacrificed, and we just need to let go and trust that we are being taken care of, just like we’re taking care of doing the work. This is something now I’m finally beginning to understand after such a crazy marathon as a student, now dealing with my own time, having to come up with money for rent, and with self discipline to keep practicing, studying, composing, etc. Not because a teacher or a boss says so, but because it is the thing to do, If it’s music that you want in your life, then you live it, beyond the classroom, beyond the “ratings”, you do it, because it is the thing to do, what you need and what needs to be done.