Ashanti's beginnings date back to 1983 when Berklee College of Music students from Mexico, Switzerland, Chile, Japan, and Connecticut launched a new musical project. Their Latin jazz combo, dubbed Ashanti to recognize the African roots of the music they loved to play, performed regularly at a variety of Boston-area clubs and concert venues, and even appeared on the local CBS and NBC affiliates. In 1984, Ashanti relocated to Cancun and enjoyed steady work in the city's finest hotels and clubs for eight years. The group was resurrected in 1995 when the Mayor of Merida, Yucatan, Mexico invited the Ashanti to perform a celebration concert in honor of the historic city's 453rd anniversary. In 1996 and shortly after being named Director of Jazz Studies at Central College in Iowa, founding member Gabriel Espinosa introduced a handful of local 'gringo' R&B and jazz players to the sensuous Latin music he knew so well. Since then, the latest incarnation of Ashanti has earned high visibility and an impressive following among the Midwest's ever-expanding community of Latin jazz aficionados. We're grateful to have played all kinds of music for hundreds of audiences during the past five years, including a brief tour to Cancun and Merida as part of the 'Merida 2000, La Capital Americana de la Cultura' celebration. And we've especially appreciated performing songs made famous by some of the world's greatest Latin composers. En Fuego is an Ashanti milestone. In these tracks you will hear-for the first time-our own music in our own voice. We hope you have fun listening to these original tunes.