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Xavier Cugat

Remembered for his highly commercial approach to pop music, Xavier Cugat (born Francisco de Asis Javier Cugat Mingall de Cru y Deulofeo) made an even greater mark as one of the pioneers of Latin American dance music. During his eight-decade-long career, Cugat helped to popularize the tango, the cha-cha, the mambo, and the rhumba. His hits included "El Manicero" in the 1930s, "Perfidia" in 1940, and the original recording of "Babalu" in 1944. Members of Cugat's band included Desi Arnaz, Miguelito Valdés, Tito Rodriguez, Luis del Campo, Yma Sumac, and his third wife (of four), Abbe Lane. Cugat used the success of his musical career as a springboard for a movie career that included appearances in such films as Gay Madrid (1930), You Were Never Lovelier (1942), Bathing Beauty (1945), Weekend at the Waldorf (1945), Holiday in Mexico (1946), On an Island With You (1948), A Date With Judy (1948), Chicago Syndicate (1955), and Desire Diabolique (1959).

A native of Girona, Spain, Cugat emigrated with his family to Cuba in 1905. Trained as a classical violinist, he played with the Orchestra of the Teatro Nacional in Havana at the age of 12. Emigrating to the United States, sometime between 1915 and 1918, he quickly found work accompanying an opera singer. At the height of the tango craze, in 1918, Cugat joined a popular dance band, the Gigolos. His involvement with the group, however, was brief. As the popularity of the tango faded, he took a job as a cartoonist for The Los Angeles Times. Cugat returned to music in 1920, forming his own group, the Latin American Band. Although they played regularly at the Coconut Grove in Los Angeles and supplied the soundtracks for several musical shorts, the group had its greatest success after moving to New York and became the house band for the Waldorf Astoria Hotel. Despite being criticized for their middle-of-the-road approach, Cugat remained committed to his commercial-minded sound. He later explained, "I would rather play 'Chiquita Banana' and have my swimming pool than play Bach and starve." Cugat and his orchestra remained at the hotel for 16 years. Beautiful women were consistently featured in Cugat's band. After helping Rita Hayworth launch her career, he appeared in her film You Were Never Lovelier. Cugat's recordings of the 1950s featured the singing of his third wife, Abbe Lane. In the mid-'60s, he featured his fourth wife, Charo, who he billed as a "folksinger." Upon his retirement in 1970, Cugat returned to Spain. He died in Barcelona on October 27, 1990. His band, which was led by Tito Puente following his retirement, continued to perform under the direction of dancer, musician, and vocalist Ada Cavallo. ~ Craig Harris
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Xavier Cugat

1. Celos

2. Brazil

3. Tico Tico

4. Dengoza

5. My Shawl

6. La Cumparsita

7. Besame Mucho

8. Guitarra Romana

9. Miami Beach Rhumba

10. Orquesta a la Luz de la Luna

11. What a Difference Day Made

x

Track List: Lo Mejor de Xavier Cugat

1. Amapola

2. Aquellos Ojos Verdes

3. Cachita

4. Cerezo Rosa

5. El Cumbanchero

6. El Manisero

7. Frenesí

8. La Cucaracha

9. Mamá Inés

10. Miami Beach Rumba

11. Perfidia

12. Siboney

13. Té para Dos

14. Tequila

15. Tico Tico

16. Virgen de la Macarena

x

Track List: Latin Mambo

1. Tequila

2. Cuban Mambo

3. El Manisero

4. Cachita

5. Frenesí

6. La Cucaracha

7. Malagueña

8. Mamá Inés

9. Ojos Verdes

10. Perfidia

11. Samba de la Boda

12. Cerezo Rosa

13. Siboney

14. Té para Dos

15. Virgen de la Macarena

16. Cielito Lindo

17. El Cumbanchero

18. La Cumparsita

19. Miami Beach Rumba

20. Tico Tico

x

Track List: O Brasil de Ouro

1. Brasil

2. Samba de la Boda

x

Track List: La Época de las Grandes Orquestas - Xavier Cugat

1. Cerezo Rosa

2. El Manisero

3. Hava Nagila

4. Malagueña

5. Siboney

6. Té para Dos

7. Virgen de la Macarena

8. Andalucía

9. Ay, Que Me Vuelvo Loca

10. Amapola

11. Bésame Mucho

12. El Cumbanchero

13. La Bamba

14. La Cumparsita

15. Quiéreme Mucho

16. Tico Tico

x

Track List: The Best Of Cugat

1. Mama Inez

2. Tea For Two

3. Tequila

4. Taboo

5. Sway

6. Amor

7. Amapola

8. El Cumbanchero

9. Ba-Tu-Ca-Da

10. Misirlou

11. It Happened In Monterey

12. Always In My Heart

x

Track List: Con Todo El Sabor

1. Amapola

2. Cerezo Rosa

3. El Cumbanchero

4. El Manisero

5. Brasil

6. Andalucía

7. Aquellos Ojos Verdes

8. Arrivedercci Roma

9. Cachita

10. Cielito Lindo

11. Cuban Mambo

12. Frenesí

13. La Cucaracha

14. La Cumparsita

15. Malagueña

16. Mama Inés

17. Miami Beach Rumba

18. Ojos Verdes

19. Perfidia

20. Samba De La Boda

21. Siboney

22. Te Para Dos

23. Tequila

24. Tico Tico

25. Virgen De La Macarena

x

Track List: Legends Of Music Collection

1. Cuban Love Song

2. Amor

3. Begin The Beguine

4. Cherry Pink And Apple Blossom White

5. La Cumparsita

6. La Dolse Vita

7. Uuugh

8. Madrid

9. Jamay (2011) (Cugat & His Orchestra)

10. Miami Beach Rhumba (Cugat & His Orchestra) (2011)

11. Perfidia

12. Jalousie

13. One Mint Julep (Cugat & His Orchestra) (2011)

14. Cuban Mambo (Cugat & His Orchestra) (2011)

15. Merengue Flamenco

16. Rico Vacilon

17. Siboney

18. Greek Bolero

19. Me Lo Dijo Adela

x

Track List: Latino

1. Frenesi

2. Besame Mucho

3. Cuban Love Song

4. The Peanut Vendor

5. Brazil

6. The Isle Of Capri

7. Oye Negra

8. Amor Amor Amor

9. Begin The Beguine

10. Jealousy

11. Green Eyes

12. Siboney

13. Amapola

14. La Cumparsita

15. Say Si Si

16. Adios

x

Track List: Besame Mucho Suavecito

1. Babalu

2. Jamay

3. Anana Boroco Tinde

4. Cuca

5. Bim Bam Bum

6. A Bailar Merengue

7. Coco Seco

8. Suavecito

9. Miami Beach Rhumba

10. Yo Quiero Un Mambo

11. Son Los Dandis

12. Mamba Jambo

13. Ritmo Tropical

14. Yo Ta Namora

15. The Anything Can Happen Mambo

16. Mambo Gordo

17. Besame Mucho

18. Tumbao

19. La Mucura

20. Cuban Mambo

x

Track List: Viva Cugat

1. Jungle Concerto

2. The Peanut Vendor

3. Isle Of Capri

4. Tropical Merengue

5. Nightingale

6. Perfidia

7. Siboney

8. Jungle Drums

9. Anna

10. Maria Elena

12. Say Si Si

x

Track List: Tico Tico

6. Tico Tico

7. Siboney

8. Bim Bam Boom

9. Amor

10. I Love You

11. Peter Peter Pumpkin Eater

x

Track List: The Platinum Collection

1. Cachita

2. Yo Ta Namora

3. La Comparsa

4. Duerme

5. Incertidumbre

6. Oye Negra

7. Guiaglione

8. Ariñañara

9. Acércate Mas

10. Come Back To Sorrento

11. La Seine

12. Arrivederci Roma

13. Anna Boroco Tinbe

14. Tequila

15. Siboney

16. Brasil

17. Quiéreme Mucho

x

Track List: Inspiration

1. Chim Chim Cheree

2. Cu Cu Ru Cu Cu Paloma

3. Guantanamera

4. Love Me With All Your Heart

5. Mexican Pearls

6. Quando, Quando, Quando

7. Triste

8. Jungle Rhumba

9. Cha-Cha-Chan N 5

10. Day O

11. Mambo OK

12. Cuando Te Beso Tiemblo

13. El Marijuano

14. Lisboa Antigua

15. Touradas En Madrid

16. Wave

17. El Choclo

18. Dusk

19. Gypsy Airs

20. Inspiration

21. Tina

x

Track List: Me Gusta La Conga

1. Babalú

2. Bim Bam Bum

3. Me Gusta La Conga

4. Tumbao

5. Bambarito

6. Yo Ta Namora

7. Anna Boroco Tinde

8. Negra Leonor

9. Mondonguero

10. Son Los Dandies

11. Rosita La Bonita

12. Cachita

13. Negro Areza

14. Auto-Conga

15. Calentito

16. Stars In Your Eyes

17. My Shawl

18. Perfidia

19. Brasil

20. Rapsodia De Rumba

21. Cielito Lindo

22. Samba De La Boda

23. La Cucaracha

24. La Virgen De La Macarena

x

Track List: The Lady In Red

1. The Lady In Red

2. Jalousie

3. Estrellita

4. Ahí Viene La Conga

5. La Paloma

6. Night Must Fall

7. Yours

8. Jungle Drums

9. The Breeze And I

10. Green Eyes

11. I Yi YI YI Like You Very Much

12. Hasta Mañana

13. You Belong To My Heart

14. No Can Do

15. South América Take It Away

16. Habanera

17. Bruca Maniagua

18. Nueva Conga

19. Tunare

20. Mi Conga

21. Guaira

22. Elube Chango

23. Los Hijos De Buda

24. Rumba Rumbero

25. Benabe

x

Track List: Tequila

1. Ojos Verdes

2. Mambo Jambo

3. Frenesi

4. Miami Beach Rumba

5. Mama Inés

6. Linda Mujer

7. Clementina

8. Ay, Que Me Vuelvo Loca

9. Tequila

10. Una Rosa Al Viento

11. Mama Yo Quiero

12. Cuba Libre

13. Sentimiento De Balada

14. Mambo N 8

15. Me Lo Dijo Adela

16. Carnaval En Uruguay

17. Bahia

18. Chiu Chiu

19. Mambo N 5

20. Donde Estabas Tu?

21. El Alegre Ranchero

22. Cuban Mambo

23. El Manisero

24. Beguin The Beguine

25. Quizas, Quizas, Quizas

26. Para Vigo Me Voy

27. Arrivederci Roma

x

Track List: Siempre En Mi Corazon

1. Cinco Hijos

2. Blen, Blen, Blen

3. Adios Africa

4. En Lloro

5. Tabu

6. Quien Sera

7. Ba-Tu-Ca-Da

8. Misirlou

9. Sucedio En Monterrey

10. Siempre En Mi Corazon

11. El Negro Zumbon

12. Jungle Concerto

13. Maria Elena

14. Nightingale

15. Poinciana

16. Say Si Si

17. Tropical Merengue

x

Track List: Por Favor Vol. 2

1. Jalousie

2. Jamais

3. La Cucaracha

4. La Dolce Vita

5. Mambo Swing

6. Maria Elena

7. Melo Digo Adela

8. Merengue Flamenco

9. Miami Beach Rumba

10. On Mint Jolep

11. Papa Loves Mambo

12. Peanuts Vendo Manisero

13. Perfidia

14. Rico Vacilon

15. Si Boney

x

Track List: Las Mejores Orquestas Del Mundo Vol.12: Xavier Cugat

1. Virgen De La Macarena

2. Aquellos Ojos Verdes

3. El Cumbanchero

4. El Manisero

5. Cerezo Rosa

6. Amapola

7. La Cumparsita

8. Quiereme Mucho

9. Malagueña

10. Te Para Dos

11. Tico Tico

12. Andalucia

13. Ay, Que Me Vuelvo Loca

14. La Bamba

15. Besame Mucho

x

Track List: Mambo Fever - 22 Original Mambo Hits

1. My Shawl (Feat. Frank Sinatra)

2. Nocturne No. 2

3. El Comprador De Botellas

4. Tequila

5. La Bamba

6. Mis Cinco Hijos

7. El Lobo

8. El Manisero

9. Oye Negra

10. Mama Ines

11. Siboney

12. Take It Easy

13. Vuelvo Loco

14. Para Vigo Me Voy

15. Baia (Na Baia Do Sapateiro)

16. Cachita

17. Pri-Con-Con

18. Tico Tico

19. Ni Pitos, Ni Flautas

20. Fue En El Africa

21. Mama Eu Quero

22. I'm Old Fashioned

x

Track List: Lounge Masters: Charisse

1. Jungle Rumba

2. Cuatro Milpas

3. Chon Chon Chon

4. It Began In Havana

5. Mary Ann

6. Bola Negra

7. Rumba Cocktail

8. Charisse

9. Guararé

10. You Can In Yucatan

11. Rio La Yagua

12. Goombay

13. Zing A Zing A Boom, A Funny Melody That Keeps

x

Track List: Soundtrack Masters: Xavier Cugat

1. Adios

2. Theme From "Zorba The Greek"

3. Bang Bang

4. Moon Over Naples

5. Compadre Pedro Juan

6. Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah

7. Theme From "Goldfinger"

8. Music To Watch Girls By

9. La Playa Aruba

10. Theme From "Charade"

11. The Jewish Wedding Song

12. Theme From "Judith"

13. Samba Da Bencao (Samba Sarava)

14. Theme From "Thunderball"

15. Chim Chim, Cher-Ee

x

Track List: The Original Latin Dance King

1. Babalu

2. Jamay

3. Anana Boroco Tinde

4. The Brand New Cha Cha

5. Cuca

6. Bim Bam Bum

7. A Bailar Merengue

8. Coco Seco

9. Suavecito

10. Miami Beach Rumba

11. Yo Quiero Un Mambo

12. Son Los Dandis

13. Mambo Jambo

14. Ritmo Tropical

15. (The Chi Chi) Cha Cha Cha

16. Yo Ta Namora

17. The Anything Can Happen Mambo

18. Mambo Gordo

19. Besame Mucho

20. Tumbao

21. Bread, Love, And Cha Cha Cha

22. La Mucura

23. Cuban Mambo

24. Mondonguero

25. Mondongo

26. Who Me?

x

Track List: Cugat 87

1. Cuba Libre

2. Besame Mucho

3. Cocktails For Two

4. Brasil

5. El Cumbachero

6. Tequila

7. Siboney

8. Malagueña

9. Frenesi

10. Quien Sera

x

Track List: The Hit Sound Of Xavier Cugat

1. Brazil

2. Perfidia

3. South America, Take It Away!

4. Babalu - Original

6. The Breeze And I

7. Para Vigo Me Voy (Say 'Si Si')

8. Stars In Your Eyes

9. Green Eyes

10. Bahia

11. You Belong To My Heart

12. I Yi Yi Yi Yi, I Like You Very Much

13. No Can Do

14. Tico, Tico

15. The Lady In Red

16. The Rumba-Cardi

17. Night Must Fall

18. The Coconut Pudding Vendor

19. La Paloma

20. Frenesi (Frenzy)

x

Track List: 16 Most Requested Songs

1. Chica, Chica, Boom, Chic

2. Brazil (Aquarela Do Brasil)

4. Amor

5. Tico-Tico

6. Good, Good, Good (That's You, That's You)

7. My Shawl (Ombo)

8. Oye Negra

9. Walter Winchell Rhumba

10. You, So It's You

11. Jalousie (Jealousy)

13. Rhumba At The Waldorf

14. Miami Beach Rhumba

15. Cuanto Le Gusta

16. South America, Take It Away

x

Track List: Cugi's Cocktails

1. Cuba Libre

2. One Mint Julep

3. Old-Fashioned

4. Daiquiri

5. Cocktails For Two

6. Rim And Coca-Cola

7. Cugi's Cocktail

8. Grasshopper

9. Blue Champagne

10. Zombie

11. Manhatten

12. Singapore Sling

Comments

Report as inappropriate
Excelente
Report as inappropriate
togarico2001
Xavier, el meu amic, gràcies per la bona música.
Report as inappropriate
paulda9
I love Cugat!!! Saw him in person back in the 50's.
Report as inappropriate
mgreene09
Gracias Xavier for the great hits.
Report as inappropriate
jxpinc
Everyday with Cugie is a beautiful day indeed mi amigo.

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