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The bomba and plena traditions of Puerto Rico’s slums received respectability with the music of Rafael Cortijo (born Rafel Cortijo Verdejo). Inheriting his music group, which he renamed Cortijo con su Combo, when bandleader Mario Roman retired in 1954, Cortijo continued to be among the Caribbean’s many successful artists from the 1950s and ’60s. His many strikes include “Un Bombon de Elena,” “Quitate de la Via,” “Pedro,” “Maquinolandera,” “Un Negrito Bembon,” “En el Single Pie,” “Tuntuneco,” “Con la Punta del Pie,” “Yo No Quiero Piedras en Mi Camino,” and “Saoco.” Cortijo’s participation with music started at age nine, when he performed a couple of bongos a cousin got made of dairy tins. A expert percussionist, by his teenagers, he followed the Matamorsa Trio on displays broadcast by radio train station WNEL. A specialist musician since 1942, Cortijo offered his musical apprenticeship in rings led by Monchito Miranda, Coricua Sonant, Miguelito Miranda, Frank Hardwood, as well as the Sustache Sisters. He followed vocalists Myrta Silva and Miguelito Valdes on the air. He was an associate from the Mario Roman Combo in the first ’50s, and produced several major adjustments after overtaking the band’s command in 1954. He changed the band’s pianist with Rafael Ithier and, although he originally maintained vocalist Sammy Ayala, he set up youth friend Ismael Rivera twelve months afterwards. Under Cortijo’s assistance, the music group rose towards the higher echelon of Puerto Rican music. Furthermore to executing at dances and celebrations, they made an appearance daily on a favorite radio present and in several films like the Harry Belafonte-starring Calypso. Cortijo was at his top in 1962 when he was imprisoned for medications. While he was imprisoned, many associates of his music group defected to create their very own group, Un Gran Combo. Cortijo and Rivera collaborated with an record, Con Todos Los Hierros, in 1967, though it wasn’t until June 25, 1974 which the 11 original associates from the music group reunited for the concert at San Juan’s Roberto Clemente Coliseum. (A live record, originally released as Juntos Otra Vez, was afterwards reissued as Ismael Rivera Sonero Numero Uno.) Although he journeyed with Rivera to NY, hoping of getting on using the Latin music picture, he soon skipped Puerto Rico and came back. Cortijo attemptedto regain the momentum with a number of projects. He produced a new music group featuring his little girl, Fe, on vocals, and caused Puerto Rican bandleader/percussionist Kako on upgrading his previously repertoire. His initiatives began to pay back after trumpet participant Elias Lopes and percussionist Roberto Roena had been put into his group in 1969. Although Motown demonstrated interest in putting your signature on Cortijo and his group, discussions reached an impasse and Cortijo released his very own label, EGC, rather. His decision demonstrated fortuitous, as his 1974 one, “Period Machine,” supplied him along with his last hit. A significant feature of Cortijo’s music group, in the 1970s was the thrilling interplay of three vocalists: Charlie Aponte, Andy Montanez, and Jerry Rivetted. When Montanez remaining to become listed on Latin Sizing in 1977, Cortijo’s glory times had been behind him. He passed away of cancer within the liver organ and pancreas in Oct 1982. His funeral was filmed from the Country wide Film Library of Venezuela, and it had been also the main topic of a publication by Edgardo Rodriguez Julia, Cortijo’s Wake.

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