Alongside Pedrito Martínez (vocals, conga drums, chekeré, cowbell and harmonies), Rumba de la Isla features many important musicians, who are "essential figures of Cuban music and flamenco." On the Spanish side, collaborators include Niño Josele, playing the guitar and Piraña (the cajon flamenco) and John Benítez, a double bass and bass player from New York. Adding to the list are Alfredo de la Fé - the legendary violin player born in La Habana and current resident of New York, and Román Díaz (cajón, batás, spoon and vocals). Xiomara Laugart and Abraham Rodriguez are included to contribute to the harmonizing vocals.
From the daring first track, "Que a mí me vió de nacer"to the last, "Homenaje a Camarón"(written by Pedrito Martínez and Román Díaz), Rumba de la Isla boasts originality and moves away from well-trodden musical paths while providing a creative merge of Cuban and flamenco music. The record does not include any trite "rumbita-con-son" tracks-instead, it has a percussion basis which along with delightful guitar and violin arrangements, enrich the songs musically and dive directly into the essence of Cuban music.
Pedrito Martínez was born in La Habana in 1973, but has lived in New York since 2000. He has recorded and toured with Paquito D'Rivera, Brian Lynch, Steve Turre, Me'shell Ndege'Ocello, Eddie Palmieri, Bill Summers and Los Hombres Calientes, Arturo "Chico" O'Farrill, Stefon Harris, Bebo Valdés, Cassandra Wilson, Joe Lovano, Isaac Delgado, Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Edie Brickell, Eliane Elias, and Sting. He also took part in the film Calle 54, directed by Fernando Trueba in 2000. Pedrito Martínez has received six Grammy® nominations, winning for Simpático, on which he collaborated with Eddie Palmieri and Bryan Lynch. Martínez was also a member of Yerba Buena, a band he recorded and toured with worldwide, accompanying artists like Dave Matthews, Willie Nelson and Ray Charles.