Born in Barranquilla, Colombia, Roberto studied music at the National University of Bogota, going on to tour Latin America and the States with Orquesta Lucho Bermudez, Colombia’s leading big band.
After session work in New York, he moved to London and co-founded the UK’s first salsa band, Valdez.
Roberto has toured the world many times over, working with:
Orquesta La Tradicion, Cayenne, Gonzalez, Sonido de Londres Joe Strummer, Arrow, Radio Futura, The Frank Chickens, Motorhead, Trevor Watts, Slim Gaillard, Alfredo Rodriguez, Kate Bush, M. People, Carlos ‘Patato’ Valdez, Adalberto Santiago, Azuquita, Tito Allen, the Nuyorican Poets, and countless others.
In 1987, Roberto founded his own all-star band, The Roberto Pla Latin Ensemble. I have been in the band ever since then. 2022 marked the 35th anniversary.
After a quarter of a century of globe-trotting and international residencies, this incredible, barn-storming dance band is still raising the roof at clubs and festivals, led by the legendary maestro himself on timbales: Roberto Pla.
The Roberto Pla Latin Ensemble is on Facebook.