Hi everyone, Well, I've been away from SF for a good while now, in part because I moved from FL to CA for a new job. And while I miss my home, my family etc. I find myself in a bigger city (I'd rather not say which for now, just for security reasons and all that) and possibly in a position to start up a salsa band. It sounds like a ton of fun (and for most musicians, yes it is fun not work lol) and we have plenty of venues here, for the future. But since this isn't even the starting point (this is more like pre-planning stage lol) I have a couple questions for you guys. 1. Is salsa even popular on the west coast? Today I got to check out a couple of the Hispanic neighborhoods and heard norteña, ranchero, y más norteña. Outside of the Hispanic neighborhoods, I only hear salsa in my favorite Puerto Rican restaurant (went there 2day ). So as much as I'd love to see a band get going I wonder how it will be recieved. I live in Southern Cal. and that's about as much info. as I'm giving out for now, lol. I miss the PR-influenced music in Florida and I WILL NOT drop salsa for accordion music (lol). ) but is there even an interest in salsa in SoCal? 2. What would you say is the minimum requirements of a salsa band? Obviously, in a perfect world I'd have the full percussion, brass, and vocal sections that make our music so cool, but what would you say are the most essential instruments to salsa? (Note: by "salsa" I mean the Puerto Rican/Cuban combination of son, mambo, maybe a little plena/bomba etc. and not an umbrella term that includes bachata, merengue, cha-cha, latin rock etc. - I think u get the point). I know the ideal would be something like this: 11-15 people - congas, timbales, bongos, maracas, guiro, piano, bass, 2-3 trumpets, 2-3 trombones, 1-2 lead vocalists and 3-4 background singers Personally I'd love to see this: 5-7 people - congas, timbales, bongos, vocalist w/maracas, piano, bass and trumpet/trombone (these last 2 can be done with my excellent keyboard but obviously live is better lol). I think it'll really depend on who I can find that plays and what they play. I've been watching some YouTube vids 2nite of groups that are just 4-5 people (minimum I've seen is congas, timbales, piano and bass or instead of bass a vocalist w/maracas or guiro). So... what do YOU think? Thanks in advance.