Roberto Ortiz is an Indiana kid finding his place in the world. Roberto was raised by his grandmother, who ran a women’s shelter. After high school, he hopped on a bike and rode down to Mexico to find his estranged family. After two years and a few thousand miles of cycling, he ended up in the Amazon jungle making a documentary about a community poisoned by the remnants of big oil’s conquest in the rainforest. Afterwards, he landed back in LA where he collaborated with Mark Foster (Foster The People) and Bekon (Kendrick Lamar), traversing his way around town on bike and public bus. This resulted in a bike accident concussion, but that story is for another day.
2020 finds the young man releasing his first recordings of songs he wrote on his bicycle travels across North America. Growing up as a half-black half-Mexican kid in the midwest wasn’t exactly easy, and contributed to a complex individual with his own mind and thoughts about love and spirituality. These first batch of songs reflect his depth and intricacy as an artist and songwriter, and his diverse array of influences from Chance the Rapper to Paul Simon and Céu.
NEW INDIE R&B ARTIST
RELEASES DEBUT SINGLE “DORRIGO”
PLUS OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO
PRODUCED BY MIRO MACKIE (COLD WAR KIDS, ST. VINCENT), DANIEL CHAE (WARNER CHAPPELL), AND MIXED BY NATHAN PHILLIPS (FRANK OCEAN, THE NEIGHBORHOOD).
PREMIERED VIA FLOOD MAGAZINE
Mike LeSeur – Flood Magazine
AUGUST 7, 2020 (LOS ANGELES, CA) — Roberto is soon to be a household name. Growing up in Indiana, before traveling to Mexico by bicycle to reunite with family before taking a chance on Los Angeles, Roberto has lived a thousand lives already. As a Half-Black, Half-Mexican artist with Midwest roots, his music encompasses various cultures all rolled into one unifying sound. His debut single “DORRIGO” arrives today, and with its quirky indie rock vibes meshed with R&B soul, it has a little something for everyone.
“DORRIGO,” produced by Miro Mackie (Cold War Kids, St. Vincent),Daniel Chae (Warner Chappell), and mixed by Nathan Phillips (Frank Ocean, The Neighborhood), is just the first taste of Roberto’s saga. The song evolved from a whirlwind relationship with an Australian lover that ultimately didn’t work out. Midway into the relationship, his lover moved home and things ended abruptly.
He shares, “DORRIGO is about a love interest I experienced while writing in the studio. Me and my co-writer had such a deep connection until she went back home to Australia. Then I found myself panicking every time my phone went off to see what she was saying. Is she still interested? Did she find someone else? The anxiety was rough but it inspired the song and I hope people can relate and this song puts a smile on their face. I know a lot of people are isolated from loved ones right now.”
The accompanying and playful music video shows Roberto in a boxing ring fighting a cell phone.
“Every time you call me up / you don’t even know you’re f***ing me up / I always thought I was tough / now I got a mobile phone f***ing me up.”
No spoilers here on the outcome of the fight, though, the lyrics strongly foreshadow the champion of this ring.
WATCH “DORRIGO” MUSIC VIDEO:
Tastemaker magazine Flood calls the “cosmic” new music video “a goofy—if not relatable—visual,” and the legendary LA trademark radio station KROQ is set to air the track on Locals Only with Kat Corbett this Sunday evening (Aug 9).