and Florentino Primera
, a popular Venezuelan pop duo billed as Servando y Florentino
, experienced remarkable success at a young age, first as adolescent singers in La Orquesta Salserín
and subsequently as a teenage salsa-pop act overseen for a while by Ricardo Montaner
. After fading away suddenly as the 1990s came to a close and Montaner
withdrew his support, the brothers staged a well-received comeback in 2006 with a self-titled album that signaled their maturity as well as a refreshing approach to music-making.
Born in Baruta, which is part of the greater metropolitan area of Caracas, Servando (August 27, 1980) and Florentino (August 31, 1981) are offspring of Alí Primera, a well-regarded musician, poet, composer, and political activist who died in a tragic automobile accident in February 1985. The brothers began their recording careers in the mid-'90s as part of La Orquesta Salserín, a salsa-pop orchestra of kids under the guidance of Manuel Guerra. La Orquesta Salserín debuted in 1993 with La Orquesta Infantil del Mundo, released by Columbia Records, and returned three years later with Con Mucho Swing (1996). Driven by the hit single "De Sol a Sol," which benefited from its association with a telenovela of the same name, Con Mucho Swing became an international success for La Orquesta Salserín.
In turn, the brothers broke away from the band and formed a salsa-pop act of their own, Servando y Florentino. Latin pop superstar Ricardo Montaner executive produced their debut album, Los Primera (1998), and wrote many of the songs, including the hit singles "Un Fan Enamorada" and "Aliviame," the former a chart-topper featured on the telenovela Todo por Tu Amor (1996). Sergio George also had a hand in Los Primera, co-writing a couple songs with Servando, including "Los Hermanos Primera." Following this breakthrough success, Servando y Florentino capitalized on their star power with a film, Muchacho Solitario (1999), which was accompanied by a soundtrack. Once again, Montaner penned the key hits, "Muchacho Solitario" and "Te Regalo la Luna," but didn't contribute anything to the brothers' next album, Paso a Paso (2000). Instead, Yasmil Marrufo co-wrote the songs with Servando; however, the album didn't perform well in the marketplace and consequently led to the termination of Servando y Florentino's relationship with WEA Latina, which was finalized with the release of Grandes Exitos (2001).
A half-decade later, the brothers made a surprising comeback with Servando y Florentino (2006), released by Universal Music Latino in partnership with Venevision. Again written primarily by Marrufo and Servando, with both performing much of the music as well, Servando y Florentino exhibited a more mature and contemporary style. Impressively, the album spawned a few hits, most notably "Una Cancion Que Te Enamore," and earned the brothers a Grammy nomination for Best Pop Album by a Duo or Group with Vocals. ~ Jason Birchmeier, Rovi