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Ray Barretto

While Ray Barretto's congas have graced more recording sessions than virtually any other conguero of his time, he has also led some refreshingly progressive Latin jazz bands over the decades. His records often have a more tense, more adventurously eclectic edge than those of most conventional salsa groups, unafraid to use electronics and novel instrumental or structural combinations, driven hard by his rocksteady, endlessly flexible percussion work. This no doubt reflects Barretto's wide range of musical interests and also the fact that he came to Latin music from jazz, rather than the usual vice versa route for Latin-descended musicians. Indeed, he has said that he learned how to play swing-style before he came to master Latin grooves. Puerto Rican by extraction, Barretto took up the congas while stationed in Germany during an Army hitch. He began working with American jazz musicians upon his return to New York, eventually replacing Mongo Santamaria in the Tito Puente band for four years, beginning in the late '50s. Barretto made his debut as a leader for Riverside in 1962 and scored a crossover hit (number 17 on the pop charts) the following year on Tico with "El Watusi" (in tandem with a dance craze of the time). He tried to modernize the charanga sound with injections of brass, covering rock and pop tunes of the time as several Latin artists did then. However, Barretto made his main mark in the '60s as a super session player, playing on albums by Gene Ammons, Cannonball Adderley, Kenny Burrell, Lou Donaldson, Red Garland, Dizzy Gillespie, Freddie Hubbard, Wes Montgomery, Cal Tjader, and several other jazz and pop albums. In moving over to the Fania label in 1967, Barretto began to achieve recognition as one of the leading Latin jazz artists of the day, eventually becoming music director of the Fania All-Stars. In the '70s, he was incorporating rock and funk influences into his music -- with only limited success -- while recording for Atlantic, and in 1981, he made a highly regarded album for CTI La Cuna, with Puente, Joe Farrell, and Charlie Palmieri as guest players. He became music director of the Bravisimo television program and took part in the multi-idiom, all-star, anti-apartheid Sun City recording and video in 1985. In 1992, he unveiled a new Latin jazz sextet, New World Spirit, which made some absorbingly unpredictable albums for Concord Picante. ~ Richard S. Ginell, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

.........."E L WATUSI"..... . . . . . . . . & every other piece of music he blessed us with........ . . . w i l l stay in my mind,heart, & soul ( & my FEET!!!) 4EVER!!! :-D :-D :-D :-D =-O =-O =-O :'(B-)!!!!!
I still feel a great level of pride having performed w/ Ray for 10 years seated next to him and learning in the process. I will forever miss you!
My very first Ray Barretto. Tape still have it and still listen to it....
arnold.grata c o s
Barretto's congas will forever talk to those who care to listen .. while.his rhythms will forever leave us dancing....t h a n k you brother...qu e via la music!!!
Lmao I know a DJ named ray Barret, I know that no one cares about that but I just wanted to let everyone know about him he's a pretty sick dj too and I love him to death and back I doubt that any of you guys can say that about any of your friends because I literally died and came back to life you all should check out some of his stuff it's pretty good if I do say so myself but hey who am I to say that besides being the grandson of the biggest techno signing company in the USA;X
Romantic. .... great
RAY BARRETO!!! The whole world DANCES!!! Nuff sed.
My man Ray Barretto, u r the best, luvvvvv u, luvvvvvv my people to death, wepaaaa!!!
This music lives 4ever, wepaaaaaa!!!
Ray Barretto lived for ever
Rayyyyyyyyy! ! ! Da men
Salsa gets my blood boiling, luving it!!
lobomarcox
Ray Barretto Mr. Hard Hands...Inde s t r u c t i b l e ! The best of the best I'm so proud have all he's collection and see my idol in concert....
Ray...R.I.P
Ray Barretto music is awesome, wepaaa...


lastima de esta nueva generacion salsera. De lo que se estan perdiendo. La mejor y mas completa musica universal la salsa monga. Que vivaaaaaaaaa a a a . . . . / / / / / /
gatropman
Ray your legacy of conga playing style will live in future congueros. Viva Songuasa.
nancyweissbe i n
Our music is great and so is our people! You know we are:)
Nice n wonderful duo; Ray Barretto n Adalberto Santiago.
feels good to hear this again...been too long...
Ray Hard-Hands Barretto!!!
WHETHER IT WAS SALSA, LATIN-JAZZ OR STRAIGHT AHEAD JAZZ, MASTER CONGUERO RAY BARRETTO COULD DO IT ALL.
SALSA!!!!!!H a s t a lo ultimo!!!!!Q u e Viva La Musica!!!!!!
RAY. MAY YOU BE PLAYING WITH THE BEST UP THERE. R.I.P. EL TIMBALERO.. DE BROOKLYN. (CHAPO)
Find and listen to his the Other Road album.....
Soy como soy!!!
Hard hands, luv Ray Barretto.
My FAVORITE Ray Barretto, Giovanni Hidalgo and Mongo Santamaria.. . w o u l d love to see them together again! The 3 best conga players in the world!
No better conga player then the great Ray Barretto!!!! !
arnold.grata c o s
we will always love you Ray
Makes me feel like Salsa dancing anybody wanna go???
esto es solo para los que saben de esto!!!!
qué sabor tiene este tema!! Un tremendo musico, Ray!
sigue dándonos excellente música
barreto a iot hit im so proud !!!
Tremendo solo estudiado de orestes vilato.
Recuerdo cuando me griaba mi orquesta favorita R barretto con adalberto santiago de Adonde Bengo y un monton mas vivia Barretto
Fania and Ray will be around 4-ever Lord willing R.I.P my brother
Con Barreto y mongo!! Tremendo solo!! Tengo casi todos los cd`s de "MANOS DURAS"
RAY BARRETO THE GREAT CONGA PLAYER
rvega12
Awesome conga performer,gr e a t person a pioneer in Salsa and Jazz!
Music that will live on long after we are gone.
Barreto!!!!! ! ! ! ! ! ! Siempre viviras..... . Fuistes y seras uno de los mejores.
MY DAD WAS THE ORIGINAL TIMBALERO IN INDESTRUSTIB L E I LOVE THIS SONG BUT HE IS NOT ON THIS ALBUM BUT I LIKE THIS ONE TOO! QUE VIVA LA MUSICA!!
adtcinfo
Unos de.mis maestro
afrikanzion
Another classic musician I grew up listening to. Clever, intelligent and so much fun!
love your music, good stuff
HAY Q TENER FUERZA GIGANTE.Q VIVA BARRETO!!!!
yo soy de la vieja guardia y me pase hangiando con todo los mostros de la epoca tarde 50s asta el 80 cuando la tormenta de la salsa se tranquiliso baile en el paledium 3n1 en bkyn y el caborojeno casa blanca broadway casino donde tocaban los mejores musicos de salsa.y me econtraba con todos ellos.que vida rica yo a vivido.que viva chango!!
Guarare! Rico Rico! esta cancion!
OVER THE YEARS, ONE OF RAY BARRETTO'S ALBUMS (AND THERE ARE MANY) IS ENTITLED GUAJIRA Y GUAGUANCO (TICO RECORDS-1964 ) . THIS ALBUM SHOWCASED RAY'S ADVENTUROUS AND EXPERIMENTAL SPIRIT. SWING LA MODERNA, TAKEN FROM THIS ALBUM CONTINUES TO HOLD UP QUITE WELL OVER THE YEARS AND IS ONE OF MY FAVORITES. GOD BLESS YOU RAY AND REST IN PEACE.
WHETHER IT WAS SALSA, LATIN-JAZZ OR STRAIGHT AHEAD JAZZ, RAY BARRETTO WAS THE MASTER CONGUERO!!!!
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