Beastie Boys - United States
OverviewAlfredo Ortiz is an accomplished, versatile, and highly regarded drummer and percussionist. Starting to beat on drum in 3rd grade, he later joined and performed in his high school marching band, while concurrently plating drums for a popular punk band, Los Villians. Turning back towards his roots and his early influences, Alfredo began experimenting with latin percussion, where his natural talent was apparent. He joined the latin-ska group Yeska, which paved new ground in its' jazz, afro-Cuban jazz, and ska-fusion. He later joined Ozomatli, another groundbreaking band, which featured Ortiz in their EP and first self-titled record. Playing live gigs and working in studio sessions led to meeting keyboard player Money Mark. Mark was impressed, and subsequently introduced him to the Beastie Boys, who were looking for a new percussionist. They too liked Ortiz, and within weeks, Alfredo was on a plane to Australia to play percussion with the Beasties on tour.
14 years later, Ortiz has accumulated an impressive resume, working with other well-known musicians including Money Mark, Tenacious D, The Offspring, Morningwood, Los Lobos, Blackalicious, Ozomatli, Sean Lennon, Chromeo, and Tommy Guerrero (just to name a few). He also collaborates with Demon Drummer Maceo Hernandez, who played in Japan's top Taiko group Ondekoza. Together they founded East L.A. Taiko, performing for President Clinton at a Presidential Gala in 1996. He also co-wrote original taiko/latin percussion music for the theatrical performance "Blade to the Heat", a play written by Oliver Mayer and performed at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles.
Alfredo has made appearances on Saturday Night Live, The Jimmy Kimmel Show, Late Night with David Letterman, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Conan O'Brien, and Carson Daly. He was featured in an interview in DRUM! Magazine with Mike D in September 2007, named one of the "Top 25 Latinos We Love" by Tu Ciudad magazine in November 2006, featured in the October 2007 issue of Mix Magazine, and the January 2008 issue of Relix.
Alfredo's percussion was featured on the most recent Beastie Boys instrumental album, the Grammy Award winning "The Mix-Up". He spent most of 2007 touring festivals world-wide with them, including at the televised 'Live Earth' from Wembeley Stadium in London, England.