Puente, Tito


Puente, Tito
orig. Ernesto Antonio Puente, Jr.

born April 20, 1923, New York, N.Y., U.S.
died May 31, 2000, New York City

U.S. bandleader, percussionist, and composer.

Born to Puerto Rican parents, Puente served in the Navy during World War II and later studied at Juilliard. In the late 1940s he formed his own band and rose to prominence with the salsa, mambo, merengue, and cha-cha-cha fads of the 1950s. Always experimenting, he became a pioneer of Latin-jazz fusion. His compositions include "Pare Cochero" and "Oye Como Va." He performed with many artists, especially Celia Cruz, and he recorded more than 100 albums. He also performed in several films, including Radio Days (1987) and The Mambo Kings (1992).

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▪ 2001
Ernest Anthony Puente, Jr. 
      American bandleader and percussionist (b. April 20, 1923, New York, N.Y.—d. May 31, 2000, New York), joked and mugged as he played vibraphone and timbales (paired, high-pitched drums) with infectious energy, and rose to fame with 1950s mambo dance hits; nicknamed the “King of Mambo,” he became a major figure by joining the melodies of jazz to the bravura showmanship of Latin music. The son of immigrants from Puerto Rico, he grew up in New York's Barrio, or Spanish Harlem, and became a professional musician when he was 13. After an apprenticeship in the historic Machito Orchestra, he served in the navy during World War II and formed his own 10-piece band in 1947. The fashion for mambo music soon followed, centred in New York City's Palladium Ballroom, where the bands of Puente, Tito Rodriguez, and Perez Prado excited crowds of dancers; “It is not music for a funeral parlor,” he said. Puente added to his repertoire other Latin and Afro-Cuban rhythms, including cha-cha, merengue, bossa nova, and salsa; songs such as “Babarabatiri,” “Ran Kan Kan,” and “Oye Como Va” fueled his fame. The most popular among the Latin musicians he introduced to American audiences was singer Celia Cruz, after she defected from Cuba in 1961. Always influenced by big-band jazz—“I start off writing a straight jazz arrangement, then I just add a Latin rhythm section,” he said—Puente performed with jazz stars, including George Shearing and Woody Herman, as well as with many stars of Latin music and, in later years, with symphony orchestras. Of the approximately 120 albums that he recorded, 5 won Grammy Awards, including Mambo Birdland in 2000. Almost to the end, he led his band on an unusually active schedule, playing 200–300 engagements a year throughout the world. He also performed in several films, including Radio Days (1987) and The Mambo Kings (1992).

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▪ American musician
byname of  Ernest Anthony Puente, Jr. 
born April 20, 1923, New York, New York, U.S.
died May 31, 2000, New York
 American bandleader, composer, and musician who was one of the leading figures in Latin jazz. His bravura showmanship and string of mambo dance hits in the 1950s earned him the nickname “King of Mambo.”

      The son of Puerto Rican immigrants, Puente grew up in New York City's Spanish Harlem and became a professional musician at age 13. He later studied at the Juilliard School and eventually learned to play a number of instruments, including the piano, saxophone, vibraphone, and timbales (paired high-pitched drums). After an apprenticeship in the historic Machito Orchestra, he served in the navy during World War II.

      In 1947 Puente formed his own 10-piece band. With such other musicians as Tito Rodríguez and Perez Prado, he helped give rise to the golden age of the mambo in the 1950s. Puente's infectious energy and dynamic stage presence quickly made him a star. He added to his repertoire other Latin and Afro-Cuban rhythms, including cha-cha, merengue, bossa nova, and salsa, and among his notable songs are "Babarabatiri," "Ran Kan Kan," and "Oye Como Va." Puente also performed with leading jazz performers, including George Shearing and Woody Herman (Herman, Woody), as well as with many stars of Latin music and, in later years, with symphony orchestras.

      A prolific musician, Puente recorded some 120 albums during his career and maintained a busy tour schedule, playing 200–300 engagements a year, until shortly before he died. He also was responsible for introducing a number of Latin musicians to American audiences, most notably singer Celia Cruz (Cruz, Celia). The recipient of numerous honours, he received five Grammy Awards. Puente also performed in several films, including Radio Days (1987) and The Mambo Kings (1992).

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Tito Puente & His Orchestra — Tito Puente Pour les articles homonymes, voir Tito (homonymie) et Puente. Tito Puente (Ernesto Antonio Puente Jr de son vrai nom) (New York : 20 avril 1923 New York : 31 mai 2000) est un musicien d origine portoricaine très populaire et …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Tito Puente — Way in Spanish Harlem Tit …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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  • Puente — (Del lat. pons, pontis.) ► sustantivo masculino 1 ARQUITECTURA, CONSTRUCCIÓN Construcción sobre un obstáculo natural o artificial para poder pasar de un lado a otro: ■ sólo podrás cruzar la carretera por un puente de peatones. 2 Día laborable en… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Tito — ► sustantivo familiar Tío o tía, hermano o hermana del padre o la madre de una persona. ► sustantivo masculino 1 BOTÁNICA Almorta, hierba anual. 2 Orinal alto y cilíndrico. SINÓNIMO bacín perico * * * tito1 (de or. expresivo) …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Tito Puente — Tito Puente, Sr., (April 20, 1923 ndash; May 31, 2000), born Ernesto Antonio Puente, Jr., was an influential Latin jazz and mambo musician. The son of native Puerto Ricans Ernest and Ercilia Puente, of Spanish Harlem in New York City, Puente is… …   Wikipedia

  • Tito Puente — Tito Puente. Datos generales Nombre real Ernesto Antonio Puente Nacimiento …   Wikipedia Español

  • Tito Puente, Jr. — Tito Puente, Jr., born 2 June 1971 in New York City, is a bandleader. He is the son of Tito Puente, Sr., a famous Puerto Rican bandleader performing Cuban style music for over 50 years. Tito Puente Jr. carries on his father s legacy by presenting …   Wikipedia

  • Tito Rodríguez — (January 4, 1923 February 28, 1973), was a popular 1950s and 1960s singer and bandleader. He is known by many fans as El Inolvidable (The Unforgettable), a moniker based on his most popular interpretation, a song written by Cuban composer Julio… …   Wikipedia


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