Marlysse is the pianist and acting manager of Bio Ritmo. She also contributes greatly to the song writing, arrangements and is known for her use of vintage keyboard and organs since she joined the band in 2002.
A native of the Washington DC area, her mother comes from Chile and her father of Italian-American decent. She blames her mother for putting her in piano lessons at age 6. She went on to study classical music for 15 years and got a degree from University of Maryland. Soon after graduation she felt a desire to explore composition and improvisation and at the time was heavily influenced by everything Brazilian. Then came along salsa.
Salsa hit her like a rock. She became completely obsessed with montunos and played in DC area salsa bands for a few years. She soon became hungry to write new music within the genre and it was by luck that she was called to sub for Bio Ritmo the summer of 2002. She recalls “I met these guys in Richmond, VA that play all original salsa music that actually want to do something different with it. I couldn’t believe it. ” It was meeting of minds and she’s been with them ever since.
Marlysse loves to travel. Besides her visits to Chile as a teenager, she’s been on self-funded research trips to West Africa, Brazil, Cuba, Puerto Rico and most recently a to the Republic of Georgia where she studied natural wine and the “Garmoni” (Georgian Accordion). She leads a few different musical projects including the bolero project Miramar – which she works together with lead singer Rei Alvarez – and two different Brazilian music influenced groups including Magrela Rose – a solo electronica experiment and the band Os Magrelos – which hasn’t played in a few years but did put a 45 out on Electric Cowbell Records. She also played drums in an all girl Beatles tribute band called The Girtles.