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Going live: Leader of Severo y Grupo Fuego looks forward to Zozobra Watch Party concert

Severo y Grupo Fuego will perform as part of a Zozobra watch party. It will be the band’s first live performance since mid-March. (Courtesy of Severo Martinez)

Severo Martinez has waited patiently for months to perform in front of a live audience.

On Friday, Sept. 4, he will get his wish.

Severo y Grupo Fuego will perform as part of AMP Concerts’ Zozobra watch party.

The band will share the bill not only with Zozobra, but with New Mexico legends Cuarenta y Cinco.

“This will be our first show since the second week in March,” Martinez says. “We were competing in a singing competition in Los Angeles at the time. Two days later, New Mexico shut down.”

Of course, there have been a few Facebook virtual performances, as well as a backyard concert that was filmed for the city of Albuquerque.

Not able to perform is quite a change for the band that is used to being booked every weekend. It is known for its fusion of Mexican and Puerto Rican music.

Martinez and crew were also gearing up to celebrate their 10th year together as a band.

In February, the band released its seventh album, “Pura Vida.”

“This year was supposed to be celebrating the two milestones,” Martinez says. “We haven’t been able to take our new music out to the fans. People really enjoy purchasing our CDs at shows, and that hasn’t been happening.”

Martinez has spent downtime writing new songs.

A bright spot for the band amid the pandemic is that the members created masks with the band logo on them.

“We have different designs and never imagined that masks would be our biggest-selling merchandise,” he says. “They are musically inspired, and we create all of them.”

Martinez says people connect with music more than ever before during this time.

“Music unites people, and during this quarantine, we’re still uniting people,” he says. “They are constantly sending us messages and taking us back.”

Performing as part of Zozobra weekend is also a treat for Martinez and the band, although he knows it will be a different experience.

“We got the call from AMP Concerts about the drive-in concert, and I had to ask, ‘What does that even mean?’ ” he says. “It’s something that I wouldn’t have thought of. But fans are yearning to listen to live music, and it’s going to be an awesome opportunity.”

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