Bebo Valdés Dead: Legendary Cuban Pianist Dies at 94

Bebo Valdés, Legendary Cuban Pianist, Dies at 94 Creative Commons

Bebo Valdés, died today in Sweden at 94 years old. Valdes has spent the last years of his life battling Alzheimer's while residing in Benalmádena.

Valdés was a Cuban pianist, bandleader, composer and arranger. He is considered a legend as a "house" arranger for the famed Tropicana Club in Havana Cuba. He was a central figure in the golden age of Cuban music, led two famous big bands.

Bebo Valdés was a central figure during the golden age of Cuban music, in addition to being a precursor of the famous Afro-Cuban jazz downloads and creator of a self-paced, the outrigger. He was the father of another great composer and pianist, Chucho Valdés, who moved to Málaga to take care in the last years of his life.

Bebo Valdés' real name was Ramón Emilio Valdés Bebo Amaro and was born on 9 October 1918 in Quivicán, Cuba. Valdes started his career in the night clubs of Havana as a pianist during the 1940s.

His latest album "Juntos para Siempre" translated to "Together Forever" was released in 2008. Bebo and his son Chucho play classical Latin American piano tunes.  Bebo Valdés and Chucho Valdés received the Grammy Award for Best Latin Jazz Album at the 52nd Grammy Awards in 2010; they also won the Latin Grammy Award on the same field.

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Donovan Longo

Donovan Longo, staff reporter, joined the Latin Times team in February 2013 and has quickly become our resident pop culture expert. As a native New Yorker and Fordham University alumni, Donovan has always had her finger on the cultural pulse and is here to get you in the know.  As a follower of Donovan’s writing you will undoubtedly win a game of thrones, survive a zombie apocalypse, fall in love with a vampire and outsmart the CIA.