In lower than three years, 18-year-old Juan Ortega has gone from studying to play guitar on YouTube to importing covers of his favourite Mexican regional music on Instagram, to forming his group Los Aptos. The group’s viral hits have already taken Los Aptos’ Sad Sierreño love songs to the prime of the charts, gaining main label consideration.
Ortega says he was an enthusiastic fan of all music from an early age, soaking in influences from his Mexican-born dad and mom, who performed regional music and rock en Español at household features, to his older sister’s American indie rock.
“I’ve been surrounded by completely different genres of music my complete life,” Ortega tells Remezcla over a Zoom name from his bed room in Fort Wayne, Indiana. “I’ve all the time been a music lover and I all the time needed to make music or be an artist since I used to be a child.”
Still, Ortega says he by no means thought that his musical desires may ever develop into a actuality and determined to concentrate on graphic design and faculty. It wasn’t even till 2019 when he says he first picked up a guitar, impressed by the DIY spirit of teams like T3R Elemento who had been importing covers and authentic songs to their social media and gaining followers by the tens of millions.
“That was actually dope, I actually admired that,” he says.
While Ortega grew up a fan of rap music, the contemporary new sounds emanating from fellow Mexican and Mexican-American artists like Natanael Cano and Junior H weren’t solely thrilling to the then-high college sophomore, they turned his gateway to creating his personal music.
“I’ve all the time needed to make music and I by no means thought it might have been in Spanish,” he says. “But my platform grew from importing Spanish covers, my viewers is primarily Mexican Spanish-speakers, and I grew from that.”
Soon, Ortega recruited his childhood pal Jony Rivera to play bass, and in the direction of the finish of 2019, Los Aptos was born. The duo’s first cowl video, of the music “No Eh Cambiado” by Junior H, rapidly hit 20 thousand views in a single week. The group’s subsequent video went viral, raking in additional than 100 thousand views shortly after.
Schooling from residence on account of COVID-19 for a lot of their junior and senior years in highschool allowed Los Aptos the freedom to work on authentic songs and self-release their debut venture, “Mis Ilusiones.” The five-song EP was recorded in Summer 2020 and launched in September.
“We recorded that every one in in the future in Jony’s room,” he says. “The manufacturing wasn’t the finest, but it surely was what we may do. It was adequate to place us on the market.”
Good sufficient to land “Mis Ilusiones” in the Top 100 of Apple Music’s Latin charts behind the success of its lead monitor “Eres Tú.” The music is the good instance of the longing romantic sirreño sound Los Aptos has develop into recognized for. The band then rapidly adopted up with its subsequent hit, “Enamorado,” which slowly and steadily climbed its option to 200 thousand streams.
With main labels desperate to money in on the virality of younger teams, says Ortega, it wasn’t simple to show down some of the offers being placed on the desk. But, at the finish of the day, Ortega says, he is aware of his music continues to be creating and the group determined to launch its upcoming album, Lluvia Y Sol, on the indie Latin and Mexican regional label VPS Music.
The first single, “Mi Amor,” debuts in the present day on Remezcla forward of the album’s launch on August 27. Now a trio after including extra guitarist Alex Rivera, brother of bassist Jony Rivera, the music and album are a big leap from the bed room recordings on Los Aptos’ early releases.
With the reputation of “Enamorado,” “Mis Ilusiones,” and the launch of “Mi Amor,” the group is poised at the forefront of Mexican regional music’s subsequent large factor —Sad Sierreño. Partially a response to the rougher trap-influences of corridos tumbados whereas additionally being its gentler, extra romantic cousin (assume ‘90s R&B’s relation to the extra rugged road hip-hop of the similar period), Lluvia y Sol is the group’s bid to develop into the style’s poster boys.
“It’s onerous to place a identify to our style and I’m so grateful to be half of this new motion,” he says. “It’s a mashup of completely different music for these of us who grew up listening to so many alternative influences. So much of the influences will not be noticeable — it might be one thing so simple as the storytelling. I attempt to not be so direct with my lyrics and be a little extra poetic.”
So whereas most youngsters his age are having fun with their first summer time out of highschool, Ortega and his fellow Aptos are eagerly awaiting one other sort of commencement — on a a lot bigger stage.
“I would like folks to note that the high quality of the work has stepped up,” says Ortega. “We labored in a actual studio on state-of-the-art tools. This style of music is reaching folks like by no means earlier than. It’s rising tremendously and I need to continue to grow as an artist.”