Exotic Cocktails and longdrinks combined with hot Latin Rhythms from the stage ... this must have been the impression of a latecoming visitor, who entered when the Munich Salsa-Group Wawanco set the audience in an frenetic extasy as if they were high.(...) The Salsa of Wawanco naturally is a cocktail with a special savour that keeps all people young and fresh independently of their real age and feeling. (...) Characteristic of the group is the enthousiastic pleasure of making music, which drives the public into enthousiasm at once. (Stated by the SŘddeutsche Zeitung referring to Wawancˇ on stage).
Wawanco belongs to the leading Salsa-Bigbands of Europe. It is true that they make really extraordinary music. Alfred M. Hartmann (piano and violin) is the Bandleader of Wawanco. As a boy of 10 he wrote down his first own compositions, later he got the Diplomas of the Musikhochschule Munich and the International School of Percussion under Freddie Santiago. Recordings and Concerts followed at the BR, HR, ARD and ZDF Radio and Television Broadcasting Stations with different groups.
In his group he gathered really first class musicians: the Leadsinger Anthony Martinez, living actually in Europe and being a Superstar of the Salsa-Scenario of Puerto Rico with some thousand sold discs in the caribbean regions as well as nowadays the great Cuban entertainer Janet Hernandez or the Timbalero Tomas Stoetzer. Some of them got their feeling and knowledge for Salsa by studies in the home countries of the Salsa (Cuba and Puerto Rico). As money making is a problem for all young artists, they have to play always in several groups to earn their lives. So our spanish bassist Manolo Diaz plays in Jazzband (interchanging with Roberto Tey Acosta from Cuba or Duli Richardson from Aruba) or in Soul- and Funkbands (Zauberberg) such as the brass-players Carlos Castrillo, a cousin from Jesus Alema˝y, leader of the AfroCubanAllStars and Albrecht Huber (tp) or they work as recording musicians for the broadcast and film composers as for example the Saxofonist Ingo Erlhoff. From December 2000 we had as a guest several times the great Cuban trumpet player Mario "El Indio" Hernandez from Irakere.
Some of them teach their knowledge to the youth as f. e. the trombonist Hermann Breuer at the Richard-Strauss-Conservatory, the trumpetist Peter Tuscher at the Conservatory in Linz, or the Bandleader Alfred M. Hartmann at a Music-Highschool at Munich.
Wawanco is probably the only Salsaband in Europe who presents in a larger range its own compositions. The music is made by the pianist and bandleader, Alfred M. Hartmann and the texts are written and worked out in improvisation by the singers. In the meantime some of the pieces have got such a good fame that they are played by caribbean bands. Since several years there is also the famous cuban composer and bassist Silvio Vergara (Rumbavana, later Grupo Raizˇn) who writes exclusive arrangements for Wawancˇ. Shortly also Jorge Leliebre from Los VanVan.
Among the actual highlights there are Live-cuts of broadcast emissions by the ARD-Television and the Bavarian Radiostation as well as the participation at festivals in Switzerland, in Germany, Austria and Italy. Also a good support came through the great Cuban pianist and bandleader Manolito Simonet ("Manolito Y Su Trabuco"). His lead-singer Alexander Fernandez-Akero ("El Caballo Grande") shortly perfomed a few concerts with Wawancˇ.
Wawanco means a dozen of really latin full-blooded musicians, whose virtuous playing, hot rhythm and beautiful melodies ... go to the hearts of the auditions and raise their feeling to pure enthousiasm. ... this music will not only enter your ears and your feeling but also make your legs move and your mood raise. Be cautious: Wawancˇ means really - no chance for bad humour and frustration (quotation from a report of the Bavarian radiostation referring to a public concert of Wawancˇ).