Alert
Close

Last chance – give now. Before 2014 ends, help struggling seniors. Donate

Highlights

Open

Caucasian couple looking at a laptop computer together

Horoscope

Scorpio - AARP Horoscope

Look at what your future holds if your birthday is between Nov. 23 & Dec. 22.

2015 LIFE@50+ MIAMI

Miami skyline viewed through palm trees.

Enjoy fun in the sun during Life@50+, May 14-16, 2015

Most Popular

Viewed

Latin Music Legends on Forever Stamps

5 Latin American artists honored by the U.S. government have their faces stamped in postal history

TITO PUENTE
1923-2000

Showman, composer, orchestra director, a virtuoso on multiple instruments and of a prolific productivity, "the King of timbales" recorded more than 100 albums in every imaginable tropical genre.

He started his career in the 1940s with rhythmic mambo and cha-cha-cha sessions. In the 1950s, he reached the peak of his career: mythical recordings of dance music (the classic Dancemania), ethereal Latin jazz compositions (his unbeatable Tambó of 1960) and the innovative spirit of his percussion solos (Puente in Percussion). The 1960s were about bossa nova and boogaloo; in the 70s, funk and Latin soul. Through the end of his career, Puente, born in New York of Puerto Rican parents, was happy to alternate between salsa (a term he deemed incorrect) and Latin jazz. Puente had an extraordinary ear for identifying talent; he made many recordings with Celia Cruz, La Lupe, Santitos Colón, the Panamanian singer Azuquita, Gilberto Monroig and Vicentico Valdés. He was the first musician to isolate the timbales from the percussion instruments, placing them up front on stage, where he accompanied his solos with elegant dance steps and his incomparable cheerful expressions. In the movie Calle 54, he is seen in his iconic white suit, enjoying music as if for the first time. He died in 2000 at the age of 77. 

Suggested Recordings

Dancemania
(1958)

Tambó (1960)

El rey bravo (1962)

Tito Puente and His Concert Orchestra (1973)

The Mambo King: 100th LP (1991)

50 Years of Swing (a collection of 3 records, 1997)

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts

Processing

Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.

Around the
Community

Expressive Drawing and Creativity Group Icon

Expressive Drawing

With inspiration from the book "Expressive Drawing" we'll share and discuss ways to keep art in our lives. Discuss

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Cirque Du Soleil

Members save up to 20% on live Cirque du Soleil shows with their AARP membership card.

Member Benefit AARP Regal 2

Members pay $8 for Regal ePremiere tickets purchased online. Conditions apply.

Movies Unlimited

Members save 10% on purchases of DVDs & Blu-ray discs from Movies Unlimited.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! Members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.

Rewards for Good

Your Points Balance:

Learn More

Earn points for completing free online activities designed to enrich your life.

Find more ways to earn points

Redeem your points to save on merchandise, travel, and more.

Find more ways to redeem points