Grupo Niche is a legendary Colombian salsa orchestra founded in Cali in 1978, led by songwriter Jairo Varela and trombonist/arranger Alexis Lozano. The band has had many members throughout the years, including Nicolás “Macabí” Cristancho (piano), Francisco “Porky” García (bass), Luis Pacheco (congas), Jorge Bazán (vocals), and Héctor Viveros (vocals), among others. Al pasito, their first album, was edited in 1979 and went largely unnoticed by audiences and critics alike. In 1981, they would find success with their second LP, Querer es Poder, which included the song “Buenaventura y Caney,” their first massive hit in Colombia. After a brief tour in the United States, they released the albums Prepárate and ¡Directo desde Nueva York! Niche’s 1984 album No Hay Quinto Malo included the song “Cali Pachanguero,” which propelled them to local and international stardom. In 1985 the group released two albums, Triunfo and Me huele a casamiento, adding singer Tito Gómez and pianist Israel Tenenbaum to their line-up. Gómez would remain with Niche until 1990, when they released Cielo de Tambores, which made it to number 3 on Billboard’s tropical music charts. Even though bandleader Jairo Varela died of a heart attack in 2012, the band is still going strong with a different lineup.