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Fue la pionera en la difusión de la salsa colombiana al publicar su primer álbum Tesura. Su primer éxito fue con Píper Pimienta Díaz, A la memoria del muerto.


De Saoko se conocieron hits como Tú sufrirás, Tronco seco, Los charcos, El patillero, Barranquillero arrebatao, Manyoma y El preso, el himno que los ha identificado desde 1975. Con Joe Arroyo, la orquesta impuso éxitos como El ausente, Nadando, Lloviendo, El caminante, Tania, Confundido, El árbol, El negro chombo, El cocinero mayor, Los patulekos, Ayunando, Bamboleo en el mar, Julia, Catalina del mar y otras más.

GFC 2024 - Post Artista - Fruko y sus tesos.webp

(Julio Ernesto Estrada, Medellín, July 7, 1951) - He began to learn how to be a sound engineer and discover how to play the different instruments he had at his disposal; First he started with the percussion ones and then he would do it with the harmonics. His musical beginnings were with the famous group Los Corraleros de Majagual. It is with this group that he had his first great success when Don Antonio Fuentes accepted that he perform the percussion with a new touch.


He was creating La burrita, a work that became one of the anthems of this Colombian musical institution. But his true glory began to emerge when he founded Fruko and his Tesos in 1970, which made him the pioneer of Colombian salsa. His first success was A la memoria del muerte, a song performed by Píper Pimienta Díaz, today a classic of national salsa.


Then Wilson Manyoma "Saoko" would appear, the voice that imposed El preso in 1975, and who had already stood out with Tú will suffer, Tronco seca, Los charcos, El patillero and Barranquillero arrebatao. With Joe Arroyo, the orchestra imposed hits of the caliber of The Absent, Swimming, Lloviendo, The Walker, Tania, Confundido, The Tree, The Black Chombo, The Major Cook, The Patulekos, Fasting, Wobble in the Sea, Julia, Catalina of the sea and more. They were building music with a lot of power, which is why it still maintains its validity in Colombia and the world.

His similarity to a character in a canned food advertisement led those who knew him to give him the nickname Fruko. By 1976, Fruko y la Tesos was the best orchestra in the country and was made up of a constellation of salsa stars. In addition to Píper Pimienta, Wilson Saoko and Joe Arroyo, May González, Juan Carlos Coronel, La India Meliyará, Joseíto Martínez, John Jairo Murillo and other figures of national song passed through their ranks. He even had, as a guest artist, Celio González. It is important to highlight that it was the first Colombian orchestra to perform before the select audience of Madison Square Garden. Furthermore, thanks to the talent of Fruko and the artistic team of Discos Fuentes, impressive orchestras emerged such as The Latin Brothers, Afrosound, Wganda Kenya, La Sonora Dinamita -in its second stage-, and Fruko & Orquesta, among many others. Also with his actions, from the beginning, he supported the professional careers of such important Colombian music figures as Armando Hernández, Rodolfo Aicardi, Margarita Vargas and Gabriel Romero, just to mention a few. Outside of the multiple awards and distinctions – which are many – he tells us that he may have toured around 70 countries on several continents, delighting the public with the incomparable music of La Sonora Dinamita and his own Fruko y la Tesos.

Over time he acquired the training of a serious music producer and a multi-talented musician; He remembers, for example, that he became the vibraphone player for the series that identifies Antonio Fuentes, Cuerdas que Llorn. His life also taught him to be a businessman and above all a promoter of Colombian talent. Today he makes permanent artistic tours abroad and works at home and in his own recording studios with the same enthusiasm and with the wisdom of so many years dedicated to musical production, knowledge that he offers with absolute dedication to the new generations so that they can build their own paths.

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