Yelba's Variety Band / Press

“Local musician specializes in multigenre covers! In 2010, local musician Yelba Heaton quit her corporate job with Chase Bank to pursue a career in music full time. Growing up in a musical household in Nicaragua, Heaton has enjoyed singing since she was a child. Now, she stays busy playing shows in The Woodlands and the Greater Houston area on a regular basis. “I’ve simplified my life,” Heaton said. “I figured out you don’t need a lot of material things to make you happy. I’m just happy being a musician.” Heaton has been singing professionally since 2001, she said. Before transitioning to being a full-time musician, Heaton was performing at weddings, quinceaneras and office Christmas parties as well as local venues, such as Fielding’s Local Kitchen + Bar, Kirby’s Steakhouse and The Refuge Bar and Bistro. “I used to run out of the bank—I used to wear a really tight bun, blue Chase shirt, baggy pants—and hop in the car with my guitar,” Heaton said. “I would”

“From the Soul - local songstress Yelba shares her passion for culture, music and family. "If I were to just perform in one genre for the rest of my life I would be so bored", Yelba shared. "[Performing] songs that everyone knows and loves, and exploring different styles of music keeps my job fun..."”

“Yelba brings the heat to The Woodlands' live music scene For Yelba Heaton, having an appreciation for all genres of music could be the reason why the sky's the limit for her Variety band. She has performed in The Woodlands and surrounding area for 15 years and has developed a strong rapport with the owners of establishments like Fielding's Local Kitchen and Bar, The Refuge bar and Bistro, Kirby's Prime Steakhouse and Cellar 24. She said those longstanding relationships make her feel so much a part of The Woodlands. Her goal is to be booked Wednesday through Saturday each week, and more often than not, she is. She has two bands and plays guitar and sings in both. Her husband, Roy Heaton, plays bass, and Rangel Morao plays the keyboard.”

Jenn Griffin - Houston Chronicle

“You're Invited! Latin tunes, intriguing art on tap for May”

“Bands on the Sand - Yelba Enjoy this popular summer concert series with fireworks on Friday and Saturday nights from 6 -10 pm. Featuring local and regional bands ranging from R&B, rock, country and blues, families can rock out as they float in the lazy river or hang out on the Island's only white sand beach.”

“New ‘Friends and Family’ event coming to Stevenson Park A new event, “Friends and Family at the Park,” sponsored by the Friends of Downtown Friendswood Association (FDFA) will take place in Stevenson Park on Saturday, November 7 from noon to 3 p.m. The free, family-friendly event is open to the public. Families will enjoy music from “Yelba,” performing many high energy music styles, including Top 40, Latin, Rock and Roll and Jazz.”

“Market Street plans slate of artistic and cultural events Latin singer Yelba will headline the event and will share the stage with local Hispanic bands and dancing groups including Aztec dancers, Ballet Folklorico and a mariachi band from HISD's Johnston Middle School.”

“Record-breaking gala raises over half a million dollars, music and entertainment was provided by Yelba's Variety Band. From our community November 11, 2014 It was full speed ahead at the 2014 St. Pius X High School Foundation Gala as the sold-out event raised more than $500,000 and honored Beth and Jim Black as the recipients of the Del Sarto Humanitarian Award.”

“Denim and diamonds combine to benefit nonprofit ranch The evening will feature unique auction items, music by Yelba's Band and a wine pull of more than 100 bottles. Panther Creek Inspiration Ranch plans to raise money through their 6th annual Denim & Diamonds Gala, Saturday Sept. 27 at The Woodlands Marriott Waterway. Attire will include denim and jackets, cocktail dresses and cowboy boots. “We’re really excited about the response from the community. This year we anticipate over 400 guests,” said co-chair Jenny Stone. The evening will feature unique auction items, music by Yelba’s Band and a wine pull of more than 100 bottles. “The gala will provide direct support to the Ranch’s exceptional equine programs for people with special needs,” said co-chair Debbie Packer.”

"A Night in OZ" Gala to benefit CASA of Mongomery County Dana Tyson of Sunny 99.1 will serve as the evening's Master of Ceremonies, and guests will enjoy fine dining, then dance the night away to the sounds of YELBA and her Latin Fire Band.

“31st Annual Lighting of the Doves and 7th Annual iWOW Festivals The 31st Annual Lighting of the Doves Festival and The 7th Annual International Winter On The Waterway will kick off Saturday in Town Green Park and along The Woodlands Waterway in The Woodlands. Hours for both Lighting of the Doves and iWOW are 3 p.m. - 9 p.m. and will be headlined by Yelba...”

“St. Pius X High School Foundation Gala honors couple Music and entertainment was provided by Yelba and Latin Fire.”

“Breast cancer gala set Oct. 25 at Woodlands Marriott The gala will include a seated dinner, live and silent auctions, live music by Yelba's Variety Band and a balloon-pop game.”

“32nd annual Katy Rice Harvest Festival promises two days of excitement, family fun Yelba & Latin Fire, Mambo Jazz Kings, and Bri Bagwell will take the stage on Sunday.”

“Yelba heats up the stage with an energetic Latin twist! Nicaraguan-born Houstonian, Yelba Heaton, has an unusual name indeed. “It’s like ‘the heat is on’ — ‘Heat-on,’“ she said with a laugh, but it’s a name to remember. Heaton, known as Yelba to her fans, is going places.”

“FREEDOM OVER TEXAS Also scheduled are locals Yelba and Latin Fire, Chris Crump, Ira Perez and Tony Henry, along with patriotic exhibits and a kid zone.”

“Houston and nearby cities plan music, parades and, of course, fireworks Country singers Billy Currington and Sara Evans headline Freedom Over Texas, the city's largest July 4th celebration. Local bands include Yelba and Latin Fire, Chris Crump, Ira Perez and Tony Henry.”

“The 2011 Houston Press Music Awards Nominees Best Latin Band Yelba Best Female Vocalist Yelba”

“Ray Wylie Hubbard to headline festival in Greenville Sept. 16-18 "We're proud that the festival continues to serve as a draw for the bicyclists and their families," said Greenville Tourism Director Milton Babb. "In fact, the largest number of cyclists ever, about 2,000, are expected due to some enhancements in the race. But music is playing an increasing role in the success of the festival." The main Bud Light Stage will be located at Lee and Oak Streets, facing east. The Blandelles take the stage at noon, followed by European Ensemble (a four woman string quartet), Josh Davis (award-winning teen Elvis tribute artist), the Vince Lujan Project (Jazz/Blues band from Denton), Back Porch Mary, Jonathan Jeter and the Revelators, Yelba and Latin Fire (Latin cross-over band from Houston) and headliner Ray Wylie Hubbard.”

“Yelba's Variety Band to perform in concert”

“Yelba’s Variety Band returns to Keller Williams concert “Yelba had such a great response when she performed at our concert last October that we decided to bring her back this season,” said Roland Duhon, Keller Williams Northeast Marketing Committee chairman. Yelba Heaton is a Latin music vocalist and guitar player who can sing a beautiful Spanish ballad, a romantic jazz set or a fun disco tune with equal energy and charisma. Yelba’s Variety Band was nominated Best Latin Band Traditional by the Houston Press Music Awards 2010. The band has a varied repertoire, including Top 40, rock, R&B and jazz in addition to Latin music.”

““Tenth Annual Paws Gala: “The Wonderful Wizard of Paws The Tenth Annual Paws Gala: “The Wonderful Wizard of Paws", hosted by the Galveston Island Humane Society, will kick off Saturday, September 18 at 7pm. With Frank Billingsley (Chief Meteorologist, KPRC-TV Local 2) as Master of Ceremonies and entertainment by Yelba & The Max Catz. OZ came to life last month as the Wonderful Wizard of Paws set out to break records and raise much needed funds for the Galveston Island Humane Society's new shelter. ”

“INTERVIEW WITH LATIN SINGER YELBA Yelba & Latin Fire is a variety band that, with 10 years of performance, has established itself in Houston, Texas, as well as surrounding areas. SMAG caught up with Yelba Heaton, singer for the Latin Fire band, after her performance at Freedom Over Texas in Houston. Yelba talks about her recent nomination for a Houston Press Music Award, past performances in and outside of Houston and three summer spots she’d love to visit.”

“Pat Green, Cowboy Mouth, Little Big Town & a diverse music lineup at "Freedom Over Texas" PATRIOT STAGE TIMES BAND FORMAT 4:15 to 5:15 Yelba & Latin Fire Latin 5:45 to 7:15 Houston Funk Factory R&B, Funk 7:45 to 9:15 Cowboy Mouth Rock”

“Woman finds harmony in her music Yelba Heaton performs as lead vocalist for band Occupation: Lead singer of her band, Yelba and Max Cat. Community connection: Lives in The Woodlands Fast fact: Heaton is a mother of five, including 13-year-old twins. Quick quote: "Music has always been a dream of mine. It's a real passion." For more information: www.yelba.net If love is a universal language, and music is a close second, The Woodlands resident Yelba Heaton is definitely multilingual.”

“With mariachis, merengue and a tamale-eating contest, the Montgomery County Hispanic Chamber will throw a fiesta for Cinco de Mayo at Market Street. The fourth annual festival is expected to draw more than 3,000 visitors, doubling the attendance from last year. The entertainment lineup includes a mix of mariachis from Houston's Multicultural Education and Counseling through the Arts; professional salsa and merengue dancers from the Arthur Murray Dance Studio, soon opening in the area; and the Yelba y Latin Fire jazz band, voted one of Houston's best bands for 2006.”

“It’s that time of year again for the 8th Annual Cinco de Mayo Fiesta Universal at Market Street. One of the area’s most popular cultural events “Fiesta Universal” celebrates Latin heritage and culture with authentic Mexican food, Latin music, dancing and fun for the whole family! The celebration kicks off at 5:30 p.m. with a variety of Latin entertainment. Watch a performance by an Aztec Indian dance troupe, sing along with an 8-piece Mariachi band and dance to the music of Yelba & Latin Fire—nominated in 2010 by the Houston Press as the Best “Traditional” Latin Band.”

“The versatile singer can vamp through merengue numbers at Houston's tropical nightspots. At the city's quieter venues, she pours her heart out on romantic boleros.”

“Rock You like a Hurricane The Press Music Awards Showcase brings a category-five storm of tunes Yelba Best Latin Nicaraguan-born Yelba plays both sides of the Latin ballad/salsa street. Working with jazz guitarist Mark Towns on her debut CD, Recuerdos, Yelba favors the "Bésame Mucho"-type boleros but easily swings into a salsafied version of "Hotel California" or a Peruvian-tinged "Tamalito." She comes by the stylistic range naturally. Her musical background is a mixed bag that includes Nicaraguan and Peruvian traditional music, Mexican ballads, merengue, light jazz, salsa, classic rock and even a little country-western thrown in for good measure. The result is kind of like Vikki Carr meets Eydie Gorme and Karen Carpenter over at Loretta Lynn's house. Purists cringe, but her fans love her. -- O.F.A. Mercury Room, 5 p.m. ”

“There are two sides to Latin artist Yelba. The versatile singer can vamp through merengue numbers at Houston's tropical nightspots. At the city's quieter venues, she pours her heart out on romantic boleros. "I have two different branches," Yelba explains. "The first one is very romantic and emotional. I've been known to make ladies in the audience tear up, because I sing Spanish tunes like Bésame Mucho with a lot of feeling. The second side is the super-charged side that makes people sit up and go 'wow.' That's what Tamalito and other salsa songs like De Que Callada Manera and Hotel California do." The songs Yelba describes can be found on her upcoming debut album, Recuerdos, due in May. She collaborated on the CD with flamenco/jazz guitar wonder Mark Towns. "Mark and I are a really good pair," she says, "because he picks songs based on the quality of the music, and I pick them based on what the song says, so I can interpret it and feel really good about what I'm saying."”

“HMNS Hosts Mixers & Elixirs Tonight Yelba and Latin Fire perform steamy salsa, merengue, and cumbia, that'll have you dancing wildly. Then, in a blink of an eye, they'll switch to smooth jazz and beautiful Spanish ballads that'll bring a tear to your eyes. A salsa instructor will also be on hand to teach some smooth moves in between the band breaks.”

“Hispanic Chamber set for Fiesta Universal “We love performing at this event because of the involvement of the crowd, particularly the children,” said lead singer Yelba Heaton, a resident of The Woodlands. “They express themselves without holding anything back when they hear good music. They dance and sing along with us, and their smiles are better than a million bucks.” Heaton said they perform a variety of music, including Latin, disco, country, rock and roll and R&B. “If love is the first ‘universal’ language,” Heaton said, “music has to come in a close second.””