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Israél "Cachao" López

Israel López Valdés (September 14, 1918 – March 22, 2008), better known as Cachao ( kə-CHOW), was a Cuban double bassist and composer. Cachao is widely known as the co-creator of the mambo and a master of the descarga (improvised jam sessions). Throughout his career he also performed and recorded in a variety of music styles ranging from classical music to salsa. An exile in the United States since the 1960s, he only achieved international fame following a career revival in the 1990s.

Born into a family of musicians in Havana, Cachao and his older brother Orestes were the driving force behind one of Cuba's most prolific charangas, Arcaño y sus Maravillas. As members of the Maravillas, Cachao and Orestes pioneered a new form of ballroom music derived from the danzón, the danzón-mambo, which subsequently developed into an international genre, mambo. In the 1950s, Cachao became famous for popularizing improvised jam sessions known as descargas. He emigrated to Spain in 1961, and moved to the United States in 1963, starting a career as a session and live musician for a variety of bands in New York during the rise of boogaloo, and later, salsa.

In the 1970s, Cachao fell into obscurity after moving to Las Vegas and later Miami, releasing albums sporadically as a leader. In the 1990s, he was re-discovered by actor Andy García, who brought him back to the forefront of the Latin music scene with the release of a documentary and several albums. Before his death in 2008, Cachao had earned a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and several Grammy Awards. He is ranked number 24 on Bass Player magazine's list of "The 100 Greatest Bass Players of All Time".

Birth and Death Data: Born September 14th, 1918 (Havana), Died March 22nd, 2008 (Coral Gables)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1964

Roles Represented in DAHR: composer, string bass, arranger

Recordings

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Decca 114516 2/11/1964 Baby Dave Pike Orchestra instrumentalist, string bass  
Decca 114517 2/11/1964 Sandunga Dave Pike Orchestra instrumentalist, string bass  
Decca 114518 2/11/1964 Latin blues Dave Pike Orchestra instrumentalist, string bass  
Decca 114732 3/31/1964 La playa Dave Pike Orchestra instrumentalist, string bass  
Decca 114733 3/31/1964 Not a tear Dave Pike Orchestra instrumentalist, string bass  
Decca 114734 3/31/1964 Que males querer Dave Pike Orchestra instrumentalist, string bass  
Decca 114735 3/31/1964 Montuna orita Dave Pike Orchestra instrumentalist, string bass  
Decca 114736 3/31/1964 Dream garden Dave Pike Orchestra instrumentalist, string bass  
Decca 114737 4/2/1964 Aphrodite Dave Pike Orchestra instrumentalist, string bass  
Decca 114738 4/2/1964 South sea Dave Pike Orchestra instrumentalist, string bass  
Decca 114739 4/2/1964 Mambo dinero Dave Pike Orchestra instrumentalist, string bass  
Decca 114740 4/2/1964 Vikki Dave Pike Orchestra instrumentalist, string bass  

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "López, Israél "Cachao"," accessed May 14, 2021, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/205971.

López, Israél "Cachao". (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved May 14, 2021, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/205971.

"López, Israél "Cachao"." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 14 May 2021.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/205971

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