BRONX, NY, NOVEMBER 2, 2023 – The Hostos Center for the Arts & Culture, in association with Joe Conzo, Sr., is proud to present a night of Latin music brilliance – “Mambo Diablo: Honoring Tito Puente,” on Saturday, November 11, 2023, at 8:00 p.m. (EST). This concert will feature a spectacular lineup of world-class musicians and vocalists at the Main Theater of Hostos Community College, celebrating the enduring legacy of the King of Latin Music.
The former members of the Tito Puente Orchestra unite as the world-renowned Mambo Legends Orchestra led by John “Dandy” Rodrнguez and musically directed by Josй Madera, alongside Mitch Frohman – each of whom boasts over 25 years of collaboration with Tito Puente. Together, in a live onstage performance, they will take you on a remarkable journey through Tito Puente’s most iconic compositions and songs. These include those immortalized by La Lupe, Celia Cruz, Santos Colуn, Vicentico Valdйs, and other legends.
The evening will be further enriched by heartfelt tributes from Puente’s sons, Ronnie Puente and Tito Puente Jr., as well as performances by notable guest artists who shared the stage and studio with Tito Puente. Among them are bassist Carlos Henrнquez, percussionists Jimmy Delgado and Louis Bauzу, and trumpeters Ray Vega and Humberto Rбmirez. Yolanda Duke will enchant the audience with her renditions of La Lupe’s iconic songs. At the same time, Lucrecia will captivate with her interpretations of the unforgettable collaborations between Celia Cruz and Tito Puente. Jeremy Bosch will serenade the crowd with the timeless songs and boleros associated with Vicentico Valdйs and Santos Colуn during their partnership with Puente and his Orchestra.
The grand concert will be held at the Main Theater of Hostos Community College at 450 Grand Concourse (149th Street) in the Bronx. Tickets start at $45, with discounts available for students, seniors, and groups of 10 or more. They can be purchased online at www.hostoscenter.org or by calling 718-518-4455 (M-F, 9 am-5 pm) or by visiting the Hostos Box Office Window (Mon-Fri, from 1 pm to 4 pm) or from 6:00 pm the day of the concert. Hostos Community College is easily accessible by public transportation (IRT 2, 4, 5 Trains and Bronx Bx1, Bx2, Bx19 buses to 149th Street & Grand Concourse) or by car (Exit 3 off the Major Deegan Expressway – I-87).
Listening Room with Joe Conzo, Sr.: Never-Before-Heard Tito Puente Live Recordings
Acclaimed author, historian, and record producer Joe Conzo, Sr. plays never-before-heard, recently found live recordings of Tito Puente performing live in NYC and worldwide.
Saturday November 11 at 3:00 PM | Repertory Theater | RSVP HERE
ABOUT TITO PUENTE
Ernesto Antonio “Tito” Puente (April 20, 1923 – May 31, 2000) was arguably the most popular Latin artist of his time. Many believe he had the most significant influence on Latin music and the Latin jazz art form in melding innovative ideas related to jazz with the Afro-Cuban tradition of the mambo and other styles. With eight Grammys, 189 albums, and a career that spanned five decades, he was known for bringing Latin music to new audiences and as the composer of such hits as ”Oye Como Va’ and “Ran Kan Kan.” With an influence on the entire music field, he helped to promote the careers of many artists, including singers Celia Cruz and La Lupe. Tito Puente had a deep connection to Hostos. He performed at the Center many times, and Hostos Community College maintains an archive of Puente memorabilia with posters, musical instruments, awards, photographs, and recordings.
ABOUT THE MAMBO LEGENDS ORCHESTRA
The Mambo Legends Orchestra was formed in 2000 by former members of the Tito Puente Orchestra, led by John ‘Dandy’ Rodrнguez Mitch Frohman, and musically-directed by Josй Madera. John “Dandy” Rodriguez began performing as a teenager with Tito Rodriguez; later, he played with Ray Barretto and Tнpica ’73 before beginning his 27-year stint playing bongos in Tito Puente’s band. Mitch Frohman, a Bronx native, was the sax and flute soloist with the Tito Puente Orchestra for 25 years. He played and recorded with famed Latin artists such as Eddie and Charlie Palmieri, Paquito D’Rivera Chico O’Farrill, and the Grammy award-winning Spanish Harlem Orchestra. Musical Director timbalero and arranger Jose Madera started playing timbales with Machito as a teenager and was the first musical director for the Machito Orchestra. He was Tito Puente’s conguero for 30 years and has performed on over 100 recordings by Latin, pop, R&B, and jazz artists.
ABOUT THE SPECIAL GUEST ARTISTS
Ronnie Puente is Tito Puente’s eldest son. His study of music began with classical piano from ages 5 to 12, which evolved to trap drums, bass, and saxophone in a rock band in later years. Married his childhood sweetheart Joan, and they have two daughters. He says he “is his father’s biggest fan” and participates musically on occasion for various tributes, including the 80th Birthday Celebration of Tito Puente at Lincoln Center and the 3-day Tito Puente Retrospective at Hostos Center in 2017.
Tito Puente Jr. is the youngest son of Latin music legend Tito Puente. He grew up watching his father perform for thousands of fans and was deeply influenced by his father’s music. In his early years, Tito Jr. was a heavy metal fan and even joined a heavy metal band. However, he started working with his father as a drum tech in his late teens. Today, he carries on his father’s legacy, sharing Latin jazz with the world while leaving his mark on the world of music.
Lucrecia Pйrez Sбez, known as Lucrecia, is a singer and actress born in Havana, Cuba. At the early age of seven, she began studying piano and music at the Instituto Superior de Arte de Cuba. She studied singing with Isolina Carrillo, the composer of the famous bolero “Dos Gardenias”. In 1993, she left Cuba and settled in Barcelona, Spain. Lucrecia’s 2010 “Álbum de Cuba” was nominated for Best Contemporary Tropical Album in the 2010 Latin Grammy Awards.
Yolanda Duke is a Latin singer born in the Dominican Republic. Her family moved to New York in 1969, where she was raised. She developed a love for tropical music before winning her first festival in 1979. She is known for her ability to infuse passion and emotion into her singing, making her a respected figure in the Salsa and Latin music communities. Her debut album was titled “Soy Una Fiera, “which was followed by a tribute to Cuban legend La Lupe titled “Nostalgias de La Lupe.”
Jeremy Bosch is a Puerto Rican vocalist who began his musical journey playing percussion and singing at his local church. He received a full scholarship to Berklee College of Music at 17, where he had his first professional experience playing alongside percussionist legend Giovanni Hidalgo. Bosch has performed globally at concerts and festivals and has worked with Grammy Award winner Sergio George and the Salsa Giants. He is also known for his work with the Spanish Harlem Orchestra and Los Hacheros.
Carlos Henrнquez is a New York Puerto Rican jazz bassist, composer, and leader who has played with legends like Tito Puente and Celia Cruz. He is a Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra member and one of the first truly bilingual musicians, mastering both jazz and Afro-Latin traditions. He has released several albums, including A Nuyorican Tale, which explores the Puerto Rican and Nuyorican experience in New York City.
Jimmy Delgado is an American jazz percussionist, composer and bandleader who specializes in Latin jazz and salsa music. He was born in New York City to Puerto Rican parents and started playing music at a young age. He has performed and recorded with many famous artists, such as Ray Barretto, Willie Colуn, Eddie Palmieri, Tito Puente and Celia Cruz. He has also led his own orchestra and released several albums, such as A Mis Mentores…To My Mentors, which pays tribute to his musical influences
Louis Bauzу is a renowned percussionist born in Puerto Rico. He attended the Julliard School of Music and studied in Africa, Puerto Rico, and Cuba. A member of the Tito Puente Orchestra for seven years during the 1970s, he has performed and recorded with Dizzy Gillespie, Machito, Mario Bauzб, Eddie Palmieri, Mongo Santamaria, Johnny Pacheco, and Larry Harlow, among many. He is a recognized expert in the performance of Afro-Caribbean ritual music.
Ray Vega is a multi-talented artist who has made significant contributions to both the jazz and Latin music scenes. Born in the South Bronx, Vega grew up immersed in jazz and Salsa. He is a veteran of the bands of Tito Puente, Ray Barretto, Mongo Santamaria, Mario Bauzб, Luis “Pйrico” Ortiz, Hйctor LaVoe, Johnny Pacheco, Larry Harlow, Pete “El Conde” Rodrнguez and Louie Rбmirez to name a few. Vega is also a senior lecturer at the University of Vermont where he teaches trumpet and Jazz history.
Humberto Rбmirez is a Puerto Rican musician, composer, arranger, and producer who is known for his innovative and influential jazz projects. He grew up in a musical family and studied at Berklee College of Music and Dick Grove School of Music. He has worked with many famous artists, such as Willie Colуn, Marc Anthony, Olga Taсуn, Tito Puente, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, and Herb Alpert. He has recorded 26 albums in various formats and styles of jazz.
ABOUT JOE CONZO, SR.
Historian Joe Conzo, Sr., owns an unrivaled live Latin music recordings collection. He produces many recordings by Latin artists on prestigious labels such as Sony Music and Pablo. Conzo lectures for Jazz @ Lincoln Center, the Smithsonian, and other organizations, and, since 2013, has taught a continuing education course on Latin music and Latin Jazz at Hostos, focusing on Tito Puente, Tito Rodrнguez, and Machito.
About the Hostos Center for the Arts & Culture
The Hostos Center for the Arts & Culture consists of a museum-grade art gallery, a 367-seat Repertory Theater, and a 900-seat Main Theater, presenting artists of national and international renown. It is easily accessible from Manhattan, Queens and New Jersey and is a mere 15 minutes by subway from midtown Manhattan.
About Hostos Community College
Hostos Community College has been an educational agent for change, transforming and improving the quality of life in the South Bronx and neighboring communities for over half a century. Since 1968, Hostos has been a gateway to intellectual growth and socioeconomic mobility and a point of departure for lifelong learning, success in professional careers, and transfer to advanced higher education programs.
Hostos offers 28 associate degree programs and one certificate program facilitating secure transfer to The City University of New York’s (CUNY) four-year colleges or baccalaureate studies at other institutions. A two-time Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence finalist, the College has an award-winning Division of Continuing Education & Workforce Development that offers professional development courses and certificate-bearing workforce training programs. Hostos is part of CUNY, the nation’s leading urban public university, serving over 500,000 students at 25 colleges.