Roberto Torres

Biography

Roberto Torres is a Cuban musician from Güines most famous for his interpretation of Simón Díaz's Caballo Viejo. He is considered to be one of the highest authorities in the history of the Cuban music. His singing career with Sonora Matancera puts him at the peaks and among the top singers of Cuba of all times. He has made a valuable contribution, along with Arturo Sandoval, Rosendo Rosell, Celia Cruz, and musicologist Eloy Crespo to the documentary Son, la antesala de la salsa. He is considered one of Cuba's highest assets in music.

Cuban-born singer, bandleader, percussionist, composer, producer and label boss Roberto Torres started singing in his mid-teens. He worked in Havana with Conjunto Universal and Orquesta Swing Casino before leaving Cuba in June 1959 for New York City. There he organised the cooperative charanga Orquesta Broadway in 1962 with Cuban flautist Eddy Zervigón, making a string of popular LPs with them on the Gema, Musicor and Tico labels between 1964 and 1968. After leaving Broadway he worked with José Fajardo and Sonora Matancera. In 1972 he sang lead vocals with Mike Martínez's Latin Dimensions on their eponymous LP on Mericana. Torres made his solo debut on same label with El Castigador (1973), including the hit "El Caminante" ("The Stroller", which became his nickname), followed by Roberto Torres y Chocolate Juntos '74 on Mericana (a collaboration with Cuban trumpeter Alfredo "Chocolate" Armenteros), De Nuevo, Roberto Torres y sus Caminantes and El Duro del Guaguancó '76-8 on the Mericana subsidiary Salsoul.

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