Chévere de Chicago Artists


Alejo Poveda
Drums and percussion
Founder and leader of the band, Alejo is from Costa Rica. He toured extensively in South and Central America before moving to Chicago in the 1970’s. He founded Chévere as a percussion ensemble in 1977.

Joe Rendon
Congas, percussion, and vocals
The leading congero in Chicago, Joe brings his deep knowledge of traditional Afro- Cuban percussion and chants as well as his virtuosity and ability to adapt the congas to any style of music. Joe has performed with Paquito D’Rivera, Andy Montanez, Irakere, and many other Latin artists.

Steve Eisen
Saxes, Flute, and Congas
Steve, an original member of Chévere, is one of the leading sax players in the midwest. For
years he has played and recorded with many of the music industry’s top artists.

Ruben Alvarez
Timbales, percussion,drums, and vocals
In addition to his electrifying playing, Ruben is also a noted Latin Music educator who has traveled to Cuba many times to deepen his knowledge of Afro-Cuban music and culture. He currently has a band with Chuchito Valdes, son of the great Cuban pianist Chucho Valdes. He is also a bandleader, and has toured with many top artists.

Ernie Denov
Ernie composes some of Chévere’s best- loved tunes. He has been one of Chicago’s top guitarists for many years, performing with many Chicago groups and leading his own bands as well. He currently tours with Mars Williams’ Liquid Soul.

Eric Hochberg
Eric has played with Lyle Mays, Terry Callier, Ken Nordine, Kurt Elling, Paul Wertico, among others. He is also a bandleader, producer, singer, trumpeter, and composer.

Chris Cameron
“Chicago Hambone”- Hammond B-3 Organ, Fender Rhodes, keyboards
Chris, one of Chicago’s leading studio keyboard players, brings his mastery of the electric keyboards, great sense of humor, and a dynamic, bluesy solo style to the mix of Chévere. Chris also produces and records with Sonia Dada.

Mark Ohlsen
In addtion to his charismatic lead trumpet playing, Mark is also a skilled recording engineer and arranger. A veteran of many jazz big bands, he also has played the Blues and Funk circuit, touring with Big Twist and The Mellow Fellows, The Chicago Catz, and others.