The father of renowned Cuban pianist "Chucho" Valdés, Bebo, who started his career at Havana nightclubs in the 1940s, was a corner stone in the golden age of Cuban big band music.
A pianist, he also composed and arranged songs, and led two big bands, as well as creating his own rhythm, the batanga.
Valdes came to fame as the musical director of the Tropicana club in Havana. From 1948 to 1957, he worked as singer Rita Montaners pianist, also arranging many of her songs. While working at the Tropicana, he also performed with US legends Nat "King" Cole and Sarah Vaughan.
The veteran musician lived for years in the town of Benalmadena in Malaga, where he had re-launched his career with the film "Calle 54" (2000) by Spaniard Fernando Trueba. His latest projects included the soundtrack of the animated film "Chico and Rita" directed by Trueba and designer Javier Mariscal, nominated for an Oscar last year.
His recordings includes the album "Lagrimas Negras" (2003), with Spanish singer Diego el Cigala, which won seven Grammy Awards, and in 2009 recorded "Juntos por siempre" with his son "Chucho".
For full article see www.radiohc.cu