Twenty-three-year-old Miami-born Cuban singer/songwriter Sammy Arriaga was raised on salsa and meringue music. But the sounds of classic and modern country are what really spoke to his soul. “I always appreciated the genre being so acoustically driven and the storytelling,” says Arriaga. “And that kind of molded what my sound is today.”
In 2011 Arriaga was writing songs and singing as, more or less, a hobbyist. He was also attending Full Sail University in Orlando studying recording engineering and production. But, ultimately, being on stage in front of an audience became his focus. “But,” he says, “I didn’t know anybody in Nashville.”
The industrious young artist began adding himself to anyone on Facebook who seemed to have some type of relevant pedigree in the music business. His hope was that he would connect with someone in Nashville and, in relatively short order, that became a reality. “I caught the attention of hit songwriter Monty Powell,” says Arriaga. “He listened to some of my demos and invited me to look him up if I ever came to Nashville."
“Nashville was the place to be, but I didn’t know anybody there.”
On a wing and a prayer Arriaga moved to the country music capital. “I was only in Nashville a short time and BMI signed me up for this songwriting camp based in Beverly Hills, California,” the singer/songwriter explains. “They needed a bunch of songs for this Mexican reality TV show. One of my friends from the camp was a road musician and he wanted me to come out to Los Angeles and meet this manager Charles. I came out and was only there three days when I came by the Latium Records offices.”
He auditioned for the label’s Charles Chavez who immediately wanted to work with Arriaga. That happened in July 2015 and it has been a career whirlwind ever since. Sammy Arriaga's current single, the self-penned “Cold in Miami,” has received plenty of downloads and praise. An upcoming EP in the works.