Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Beny More died 50 years ago

Beny More died 50 years ago today.  He was only 43 and a victim of cirrhosis of the liver.

More's music is found in every Cuban household in the US.  I remember that my parents ordered some Beny More LP's when we finally got a record player in Wisconsin.  More's music was exactly what my parents needed to survive those cold Wisconsin winters.

He started singing as a young man and eventually joined Perez Prado, the big Cuban orchestra of the 1950's.  More eventually started his own band and enjoyed tremendous success until his death.

The bad news is that he died young.  The good news is that he left a huge archive of music and much of it is available in the US:

"In 1992, BMG Music released the majority of Moré's 1948-1958 recordings for RCA Victor on five CDs for its Tropical Series. Moré never recorded for anyone other than RCA, so all his hits are here. Nevertheless, his earliest recordings with the Miguel Matamoros conjunto are missing, and only some of his songs with the Perez Prado orchestra are included. From a technical standpoint, the discs are terrific (they sound as if they were made yesterday), but three of the five albums have no liner notes to speak of and information about session dates and personnel is either very sketchy or nonexistent, which is shabby treatment indeed for an artist of Beny Moré's stature. Moré's great legacy, though, is clear on the recordings themselves: a voice that can evoke memories of lost romance, or make you dance with joyous abandon." (Spencer Harrington)

Click here for "Santa Isabel de las Lajas", a song that he wrote about his hometown:



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