Cuban Music Industry

AV (Bam) Bamford was a colorful country music producer originally from Cuba. During the mid-1930s, he owned and operated a string of radio stations, mostly in the southern United States. As a promoter of these stations, he often befriended performers who would perform live on the radio or at remote...
Candido Camero was born in Cuba on April 22, 1921. By the age of four he was already interested in percussive instruments--a field he would revolutionize by blending Latin beats with jazz. Working with other pioneers on the concepts of Latin Jazz, such as Dizzy Gillespie, Candido opened up the...
Manny Lopez was known around the world as the King of the Cha Cha Cha for his 1950s band and hit records dedicated to the dance craze, but Manny’s musical career was far more than just the Cha Cha. Manny was a highly regarded Latino bandleader who wrote several songs that have been recorded by...
Rudy Perez was born in Cuba and arrived in Florida when he was eight years old. Soon after, he purchased his first guitar from Ace Music in Miami and formed a touring band. Along the way, Rudy began writing songs for both his band and for other artists, which led to his introduction into music...
Ramon Portal moved from Cuba to the United States in 1962 and heard of an inventory job at Guild Guitar and, as he often has said, his American dream came true.  Ramon worked his way up within the company until he was appointed Vice President.  Ramon was connected with the company during many major...
Dafnis Prieto grew up in a musical neighborhood in Cuba where he quickly fell in love with the drums. During his 2008 NAMM Oral History Interview, Dafnis discussed some of his musical influences and what the term “groove” means to him. Facilitating masters classes, clinics, workshops and serving as...
Walfredo Reyes Sr. is the Cuban-born percussionist who became known around the world for his style of playing. He is also known to many drummers as the father of two great percussionists, Walfredo Reyes Jr. and Danny Reyes. During his long career he was greatly influenced by Candido, who was also...
Arturo Sandoval is the Cuba born jazz trumpeter best known for the 2000 film “For Love of Country: The Arturo Sandoval Story” in which Andy Garcia portrayed Arturo. Over the years he has performed with most of the top names in jazz and began composing music as well as playing the piano. In 2007 he...