Francisco Torres is a trombonist, arranger, composer, and educator who hails from the state of Sonora, Mexico. He is the musical director for the legendary Poncho Sanchez and a member of Gordon Goodwin’s Big Phat Band, John Beasley’s Monkestra, and the Clare Fischer Big Band. He has been a part of several Grammy winning records including Latin Soul (Poncho Sanchez), ¡Ritmo! (Clare Fischer), That’s How We Roll and Life in the Bubble (Gordon Goodwin). For the past several years, he has produced several Poncho Sanchez albums, earning five Grammy and Latin Grammy nominations for Best Latin Jazz Album.
As a sideman Francisco’s album credits include Pitbull, Frank Ocean, Michael Bublé, Ray Charles, The All-American Rejects, Jennifer Lopez, David Bowie, Robbie Williams, Brian Setzer, Ricky Martin, Los Lobos, Spoon, Dr. Dre, Busta Rhymes, 50 Cent, Eminem, Jackie Greene, Ry Cooder, Angélique Kidjo, Alejandro Fernández, Juan Gabriel, Jenni Rivera, Rocío Dúrcal, Sammy Nestico, John Beasley, Joey DeFrancesco, Kurt Elling, Dianne Reeves, Terence Blanchard, Pete Escovedo, Bill Cunliffe, Giovanni Hidalgo, Rebeca Mauleon, Francisco Aguabella, and the legendary Bob Dylan. He has performed with Santana, Cachao, Arturo Sandoval, Joey DeFrancesco, Stanley Clarke, Bill Holman, James Moody, Roy Hargrove, Nathan East, Alex Acuña, Natalie Cole, The Manhattan Transfer, Sheila E., and Harry Connick Jr.
Film credits include Dance with Me, Confessions of a Shopaholic, The Informant!, Charlie St. Cloud, and Penguins of Madagascar. Television appearances include Saturday Night Live and The Late Show with Craig Ferguson (Spoon), The Tonight show (Aretha Franklin), American Music Awards (Jennifer Lopez), Latin Grammys (Celia Cruz), NBA All Star Game (Rihanna and Kanye West), as well as American Idol, America’s Got Talent, Duets, Alma Awards, the Grammy Awards, and a regular on the Dancing With The Stars orchestra. Apart from the Big Phat Band and Monkestra, he has been lucky to perform with some of the best big bands in Los Angeles including Bill Holman, Bob Mintzer, Sammy Nestico, Bill Cunliffe, Budman/Levy, Emil Richards, Frank Capp, Gerald Wilson, Gregg Field, and Tom Kubis.
As an educator, Francisco is an in-demand clinician and guest artist. In 2013, he was selected as director of the 2013 SCSBOA All-Star band which featured some of the finest high school jazz musicians in Southern California. Also an accomplished arranger and composer, he has been commissioned by several high schools and universities for big band compositions including Texas A&M University Kingsville, Northgate High School, Crescent City Superband, and the aforementioned SCSBOA All-Stars. He has also written arrangements for Ry Cooder, Angelique Kidjo, and Los Lobos. In 1998, he helped Jose Rizo create and conceive Jazz on the Latin Side All Stars, a collection of the best Latin jazz musicians in the Los Angeles area, who included Justo Almario, Luis Conte, Alex Acuña, Al McKibbon, Poncho Sanchez, Francisco Aguabella, and Otmaro Ruiz.