Ray Barretto

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Ray Barretto_table_infobox_0

Ray BarrettoRay Barretto_header_cell_0_0_0
Background informationRay Barretto_header_cell_0_1_0
BornRay Barretto_header_cell_0_2_0 (1929-04-29)April 29, 1929

New York City, New York, U.S.Ray Barretto_cell_0_2_1

DiedRay Barretto_header_cell_0_3_0 February 17, 2006(2006-02-17) (aged 76)

Hackensack, New Jersey, USRay Barretto_cell_0_3_1

GenresRay Barretto_header_cell_0_4_0 Afro-Cuban jazz, salsa, son cubano, boogaloo, pachangaRay Barretto_cell_0_4_1
Occupation(s)Ray Barretto_header_cell_0_5_0 Musician, bandleaderRay Barretto_cell_0_5_1
InstrumentsRay Barretto_header_cell_0_6_0 Congas, drums, percussionRay Barretto_cell_0_6_1
Years activeRay Barretto_header_cell_0_7_0 1949–2006Ray Barretto_cell_0_7_1
LabelsRay Barretto_header_cell_0_8_0 Tico, Riverside, United Artists, Fania, Atlantic, CTI, Concord Jazz, Zoho MusicRay Barretto_cell_0_8_1
Associated actsRay Barretto_header_cell_0_9_0 The Blackout All-Stars, Fania All-Stars, Adalberto SantiagoRay Barretto_cell_0_9_1

Ray Barretto (April 29, 1929 – February 17, 2006) was an American percussionist and bandleader of Puerto Rican ancestry. Ray Barretto_sentence_0

Throughout his career as a percussionist, he played a wide variety of Latin music styles, as well as Latin jazz. Ray Barretto_sentence_1

His first hit, "El Watusi", was recorded by his Charanga Moderna in 1962, becoming the most successful pachanga song in the United States. Ray Barretto_sentence_2

In the late 1960s, Barretto became one of the leading exponents of boogaloo and what would later be known as salsa. Ray Barretto_sentence_3

Nonetheless, many of Barretto's recordings would remain rooted in more traditional genres such as son cubano. Ray Barretto_sentence_4

A master of the descarga (improvised jam session), Barretto was a long-time member of the Fania All-Stars. Ray Barretto_sentence_5

His success continued into the 1970s with songs such as "Cocinando" and "Indestructible." Ray Barretto_sentence_6

His last album for Fania Records, Soy dichoso, was released in 1990. Ray Barretto_sentence_7

He then formed the New World Spirit jazz ensemble and continued to tour and record until his death in 2006. Ray Barretto_sentence_8

Life and career Ray Barretto_section_0

Early years Ray Barretto_section_1

Barretto (his real name, "Barreto", was misspelled on his birth certificate) was born on April 29, 1929, in New York City. Ray Barretto_sentence_9

His parents moved to New York from Puerto Rico in the early 1920s, looking for a better life. Ray Barretto_sentence_10

His father left their family when Barretto was four, and his mother Delores moved the family to the Bronx, and from a young age he was influenced by his mother's love of music and by the jazz of Duke Ellington and Count Basie. Ray Barretto_sentence_11

In 1946, when Barretto was 17 years old, he joined the Army. Ray Barretto_sentence_12

While stationed in Germany, he met Belgian vibraphonist Fats Sadi. Ray Barretto_sentence_13

However, it was when he heard Dizzy Gillespie's "Manteca" with Gil Fuller and Chano Pozo that he realized his calling. Ray Barretto_sentence_14

Beginnings as a sideman Ray Barretto_section_2

In 1949, when Barretto returned home from military service, he started to visit clubs and participated in jam sessions, where he perfected his conga playing. Ray Barretto_sentence_15

On one occasion Charlie Parker heard Barretto play and invited him to play in his band. Ray Barretto_sentence_16

Later, he was asked to play for José Curbelo and Tito Puente, for whom he played for four years. Ray Barretto_sentence_17

It was in 1958, while playing for Puente, that Barretto received his first recoding credit. Ray Barretto_sentence_18

Barretto developed a unique style of playing the conga and soon he was sought by other jazz band leaders. Ray Barretto_sentence_19

Latin percussionists started to appear in jazz groups with frequency as a consequence of Barretto's musical influence. Ray Barretto_sentence_20

Charanga Moderna and rise to fame Ray Barretto_section_3

In 1960, Barretto was a house musician for the Prestige, Blue Note, and Riverside labels. Ray Barretto_sentence_21

He also recorded on Columbia Records with Jazz flautist Herbie Mann. Ray Barretto_sentence_22

New York had become the center of Latin music in the United States and a musical genre called pachanga was the Latin music craze of the early 1960s. Ray Barretto_sentence_23

In 1962, Barretto formed his first group, Charanga La Moderna, and recorded his first hit, "El Watusi" for Tico Records. Ray Barretto_sentence_24

He was quite successful with the song and the genre, to the point of being typecast (something that he disliked). Ray Barretto_sentence_25

Boogaloo and early salsa Ray Barretto_section_4

In 1965, Barretto signed with the Latin division of United Artists, UA Latino, and began recording a series of albums in the boogaloo genre, which merges rhythm and blues with Latin music. Ray Barretto_sentence_26

On his album El Ray Criollo, Barretto explored the modern Latin sounds of New York, combining features of charanga and conjunto to birth a new style which would later be known as salsa. Ray Barretto_sentence_27

After recording four albums for the United Artists label, Barretto joined the Fania record label in 1967, and his first recording for the new label was the 1968 album Acid, which is often cited as one of the most enduring boogaloo albums, with songs such as "A Deeper Shade of Soul" and the title track was included in the soundtrack of the video game Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories on the fictitious Latin music radio station "Radio Espantoso". Ray Barretto_sentence_28

During this period, Adalberto Santiago was the band's lead vocalist. Ray Barretto_sentence_29

Success with Fania Ray Barretto_section_5

In 1972 Barretto's Que viva la música was released. Ray Barretto_sentence_30

"Cocinando," a track from the album, opened the soundtrack of the Fania All Stars film Our Latin Thing in which Barretto had a role. Ray Barretto_sentence_31

After a number of successful albums, and just as his Afro-Cuban band had attained a remarkable following, most of its members left it to form Típica 73, a multinational salsa conglomerate. Ray Barretto_sentence_32

In 1973, Barretto recorded the album Indestructible, in which he played "La familia", a song written by José Curbelo in 1953 and recorded by the sonero Carlos Argentino with the Cuban band Sonora Matancera; Tito Allen joined as new vocalist. Ray Barretto_sentence_33

Allen left the band after "Indestructible". Ray Barretto_sentence_34

Both of these events left Barretto depressed and disappointed with salsa; he then redirected his efforts to jazz, while remaining as musical director of the Fania All Stars. Ray Barretto_sentence_35

In 1975 he released Barretto, also referred to as the Guararé album, with new vocalists Ruben Blades and Tito Gomez. Ray Barretto_sentence_36

Barretto played the conga in recording sessions for the Rolling Stones and the Bee Gees. Ray Barretto_sentence_37

In 1975, he was nominated for a Grammy Award for the album "Barretto". Ray Barretto_sentence_38

From 1976 to 1978, Barretto recorded three records for Atlantic Records, and was nominated for a Grammy for Barretto Live...Tomorrow. Ray Barretto_sentence_39

In 1979, he recorded La Cuna for CTI records and produced a salsa record for Fania, titled Rican/Struction, which was named 1980 "Best Album" by Latin N.Y. Magazine, with Barretto crowned as Conga Player of the Year. Ray Barretto_sentence_40

New World Spirit Ray Barretto_section_6

In 1990, Barretto won his first Grammy for the album Ritmo en el corazón ("Rhythm in the Heart"), which featured the vocals of Celia Cruz. Ray Barretto_sentence_41

His 1968 song "A Deeper Shade Of Soul" was sampled for the 1991 Billboard Hot 100 #21 hit "Deeper Shade of Soul" by Dutch band Urban Dance Squad. Ray Barretto_sentence_42

Also in the 1990s, a Latin agent, Chino Rodríguez, approached Barretto with a concept he also pitched to Larry Harlow. Ray Barretto_sentence_43

The idea was "The Latin Legends of Fania", and Barretto, Harlow, Yomo Toro, Pete "el Conde" Rodríguez, Junior González, Ismael Miranda, and Adalberto Santiago came together and formed "The Latin Legends of Fania", booked by Chino Rodríguez of Latin Music Booking.com. Ray Barretto_sentence_44

However, in 1992 Barretto had to leave the Legends to focus on his new jazz ensemble, New World Spirits, with which he recorded several albums for the Concord Jazz label. Ray Barretto_sentence_45

In 1999, Barretto was inducted into the International Latin Music Hall of Fame. Ray Barretto_sentence_46

In 2006, the National Endowment for the Arts awarded Barretto its Jazz Masters Award. Ray Barretto_sentence_47

Barretto lived in New York and was an active musical producer, as well as the leader of a touring band which embarked on tours of the United States, Africa, Europe, Israel and Latin America. Ray Barretto_sentence_48

Death Ray Barretto_section_7

Barretto died of heart failure and complications of multiple health issues on February 17, 2006 at the Hackensack University Medical Center in New Jersey. Ray Barretto_sentence_49

His body was flown to Puerto Rico, where Barretto was given formal honors by the Institute of Puerto Rican Culture; his remains were cremated. Ray Barretto_sentence_50

Discography Ray Barretto_section_8

Ray Barretto_table_infobox_1

External audioRay Barretto_header_cell_1_0_0

As leader Ray Barretto_section_9

Ray Barretto_unordered_list_0

  • Barretto para bailar (Riverside, 1961)Ray Barretto_item_0_0
  • Latino! (Riverside, 1962)Ray Barretto_item_0_1
  • Charanga Moderna (Tico, 1962)Ray Barretto_item_0_2
  • Moderna de Siempre (Tico, 1963)Ray Barretto_item_0_3
  • On Fire Again (Encendido otra vez) (Tico, 1963)Ray Barretto_item_0_4
  • The Big Hits Latin Style (Tico, 1963)Ray Barretto_item_0_5
  • Guajira y guaguancó (Tico, 1964)Ray Barretto_item_0_6
  • Viva Watusi! (United Artists, 1965)Ray Barretto_item_0_7
  • Señor 007 (United Artists, 1966)Ray Barretto_item_0_8
  • El Ray Criollo (United Artists, 1966)Ray Barretto_item_0_9
  • Latino con Soul (United Artists, 1966)Ray Barretto_item_0_10
  • Fiesta En El Barrio (United Artists, 1967)Ray Barretto_item_0_11
  • Acid (Fania, 1968)Ray Barretto_item_0_12
  • Hard Hands (Fania, 1968)Ray Barretto_item_0_13
  • Together (Fania, 1969)Ray Barretto_item_0_14
  • Head Sounds (Fania, 1969)Ray Barretto_item_0_15
  • Barretto Power (Fania, 1970)Ray Barretto_item_0_16
  • The Message (Fania, 1971)Ray Barretto_item_0_17
  • From the Beginning (Fania, 1971)Ray Barretto_item_0_18
  • Que viva la música (Fania, 1972)Ray Barretto_item_0_19
  • Indestructible (Fania, 1973)Ray Barretto_item_0_20
  • The Other Road (Fania, 1973)Ray Barretto_item_0_21
  • Barretto (Fania, 1975)Ray Barretto_item_0_22
  • Tomorrow: Barretto Live (Atlantic, 1976)Ray Barretto_item_0_23
  • Energy to Burn (Fania, 1977)Ray Barretto_item_0_24
  • Eye of the Beholder (Atlantic, 1977)Ray Barretto_item_0_25
  • Can You Feel It? (Atlantic, 1978)Ray Barretto_item_0_26
  • Gracias (Fania, 1978)Ray Barretto_item_0_27
  • La Cuna (CTI Records/CTI, 1979)Ray Barretto_item_0_28
  • Rican/Struction (Fania, 1979)Ray Barretto_item_0_29
  • Giant Force (Fania, 1980)Ray Barretto_item_0_30
  • Rhythm of Life (Fania, 1982)Ray Barretto_item_0_31
  • Todo se va poder (Fania, 1984)Ray Barretto_item_0_32
  • Aquí se puede (Fania, 1987)Ray Barretto_item_0_33
  • Irresistible (Fania, 1989)Ray Barretto_item_0_34
  • "Ritmo en el Corazón" (Fania, 1990)Ray Barretto_item_0_35
  • Handprints (Concord Picante, 1991)Ray Barretto_item_0_36
  • Soy Dichoso (Fania, 1992)Ray Barretto_item_0_37
  • Live in New York (Messidor, 1992)Ray Barretto_item_0_38
  • Salsa Caliente de Nu York (Universe, 2001)Ray Barretto_item_0_39
  • Fuerza Gigante: Live in Puerto Rico April 27, 2001 (Universe, 2004)Ray Barretto_item_0_40
  • Standards Rican-ditioned (Zoho Music, 2006)Ray Barretto_item_0_41

With New World Spirit Ray Barretto_section_10

Ray Barretto_unordered_list_1

  • Ancestral Messages (Concord Picante, 1992)Ray Barretto_item_1_42
  • Taboo (Concord Picante, 1994)Ray Barretto_item_1_43
  • My Summertime (Owl, 1995)Ray Barretto_item_1_44
  • Contact! (Blue Note, 1997)Ray Barretto_item_1_45
  • Portraits in Jazz and Clave (RCA, 2000)Ray Barretto_item_1_46
  • Trancedance (Circular Moves, 2001)Ray Barretto_item_1_47
  • Homage to Art Blakey and The Jazz Messengers (Sunnyside, 2003)Ray Barretto_item_1_48
  • Hot Hands (Concord Picante, 2003)Ray Barretto_item_1_49
  • Time Was - Time Is (O+ Music, 2005)Ray Barretto_item_1_50

As sideman Ray Barretto_section_11

With Gene Ammons Ray Barretto_sentence_51

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With Bee Gees Ray Barretto_sentence_52

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With Ray Bryant Ray Barretto_sentence_53

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With Kenny Burrell Ray Barretto_sentence_54

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With Arnett Cobb Ray Barretto_sentence_55

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  • Party Time (Prestige, 1959)Ray Barretto_item_6_67

With Billy Cobham Ray Barretto_sentence_56

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With Celia Cruz Ray Barretto_sentence_57

Ray Barretto_unordered_list_8

  • Tremendo Trío! (Fania, 1983)Ray Barretto_item_8_69
  • Ritmo en el Corazón (Fania, 1989)Ray Barretto_item_8_70

With George Benson Ray Barretto_sentence_58

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With Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis Ray Barretto_sentence_59

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With Deodato Ray Barretto_sentence_60

Ray Barretto_unordered_list_11

  • Prelude (CTI, 1972)Ray Barretto_item_11_76

With Bill Doggett Ray Barretto_sentence_61

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With Lou Donaldson Ray Barretto_sentence_62

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With Art Farmer Ray Barretto_sentence_63

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With Jimmy Forrest Ray Barretto_sentence_64

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With the Red Garland Trio Ray Barretto_sentence_65

Ray Barretto_unordered_list_16

  • Manteca (Prestige, 1958)Ray Barretto_item_16_87

With Ben E. King Ray Barretto_sentence_66

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With Dizzy Gillespie Ray Barretto_sentence_67

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With Al Grey Ray Barretto_sentence_68

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With Slide Hampton Ray Barretto_sentence_69

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With Eddie Harris Ray Barretto_sentence_70

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With Willis Jackson Ray Barretto_sentence_71

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With Clifford Jordan Ray Barretto_sentence_72

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With Yusef Lateef Ray Barretto_sentence_73

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With Johnny Lytle Ray Barretto_sentence_74

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With Junior Mance Ray Barretto_sentence_75

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With Herbie Mann Ray Barretto_sentence_76

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With Jack McDuff Ray Barretto_sentence_77

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With Wes Montgomery Ray Barretto_sentence_78

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With Oliver Nelson Ray Barretto_sentence_79

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With Dave Pike Ray Barretto_sentence_80

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With Michel Sardaby Ray Barretto_sentence_81

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  • Michel Sardaby in New York (Sound Hills, 2002)Ray Barretto_item_32_114

With Johnny "Hammond" Smith Ray Barretto_sentence_82

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With Jeremy Steig and Eddie Gómez Ray Barretto_sentence_83

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With Sonny Stitt Ray Barretto_sentence_84

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With Cal Tjader Ray Barretto_sentence_85

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  • Along Comes Cal (Verve, 1967)Ray Barretto_item_36_120
  • Hip Vibrations (Verve, 1967)Ray Barretto_item_36_121

With Julius Watkins Ray Barretto_sentence_86

Ray Barretto_unordered_list_37

With Weather Report Ray Barretto_sentence_87

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With Frank Wess Ray Barretto_sentence_88

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With Charles Williams Ray Barretto_sentence_89

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See also Ray Barretto_section_12

Ray Barretto_unordered_list_41


Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ray Barretto.