From New Jersey, US, Aaron Velasquez aka Flamingosis, has been making funky beats that brings you to the retro world of the 60’s and 70’s. Sampling soul, disco and funk tracks alongside his talent, he brings it all together for compact tracks of pure hazy and dreamy melodies packed with feel-good vibes. Having released two albums ‘Pleasure Palette’ and ‘Newski’ in 2015, this would see him rise on the scene alongside his touring, playing in historical venues across the US.
Before getting into his music, the story behind his name comes from a freestyle Frisbee move his dad invented, who with his uncle, both won 5 world Frisbee Freestyle titles together in the late 70’s and early 80’s. The gesture is when the player stands on one leg (flamingo) and reverse spins to catch the Frisbee (osis) giving the name – Flamingosis. That must be one of the greatest stories I’ve ever heard in terms of artists naming themselves, reminding listeners of not only this story but a glorious age of soul and groove era. Being surrounded by vinyl from his parent’s collection which included “Rapper’s Delight” by The Sugarhill Gang and other groovy records, it was in high school that he discovered hip-hop producers such as Nujabee, J Dilla, Flying Lotus whilst continuing to play saxophone in a jazz and symphonic band.
After taking music tech courses, Flamingosis has been non-stop at work, producing album on album which can all be streamed and enjoyed on Youtube as well as Bandcamp. His work ethic he says, comes from his parents who gave him the confidence and mentality that you must work hard to get to where you want to get – it reflects on his work as well as success. Have a listen to ‘Great Hair’ (2016), released on a German label called Uknowy, picturing his uncle and father on the cover, the whole thing is an absolute delight for your ears:
“Riding the L”, “Getting Close to You”, “Sun Whisperer”, “Snack on Snack” and pretty much every track is all filled with groove, synth and funk from start to finish.
How about this track of his ‘Pleasure Palette’ (2015) album, the opener to what is another groove, feel-good album that reminisces the 70’s bright colors, grainy sounds and a juggling baseline.
Coming onto his latest album ‘Bright Moments’, I don’t even really know where to begin, this record is packed with soul, funk and disco tracks that has you hooked all the way through. Flamingosis’ vibes are contagious, he wants to think about the music and nothing else, which is exactly what happens when I listen to him. Just writing this article is a struggle, I want to either get up and find people to dance to this with or kick back by the pool with a mojito, whilst I cook in the sun on a long-chair. From the beginning, “Bright Moments” starts us with magical synths leading you to a different time, a different mood and bam – 00:38, we’re off.
Commenting on his latest record, Velasquez said: “This album is a continuation of the hip-hop/funk hybrid sample based music that I’ve been making for the past few years. Hope you all can find your own “Bright Moment” in these tracks. Big ups to The Kount, Birocratic & Tom Ribbons in being an instrumental part in helping to create this album with me. And to everyone else who continues to support what I do, thank you so so so much. I owe you a bodega sandwich sometime.” I honestly don’t know what else to say, its grey and cold in London as I’m writing this, but Flamingosis has given me my bright moment of the day and I’m a 100% sure he will give you yours too. The whole album, pretty much everything he’s produced, is simply all you need for your summer vibes or if you feel like taking a trip back to the 70’s in search of feel-good groove and funk.