Ruben Blades and Gilberto Santa Rosa to perform in the Bronx
Gilberto Santa Rosa and Ruben Blades appear at Lehman Center for the Performing Arts
Lehman Center for the Performing Arts proudly presents a
special 30th Anniversary Season event by two living Salsa legends, singing side
by side on the same stage for the very first time – multi-GRAMMY Award winners
RUBÉN BLADES and Gilberto Santa Rosa – performing their major international
hits in the premiere performance of their Una Sola Salsa 2011 tour on Saturday,
February 26, 2011 at 8pm. The performing
arts center is located at 250 Bedford Boulevard West, Bronx, New York.
Ruben Blades also known as “El Poeta” (The Poet), is one
of the most successful vocalist/composers in the history of Latin music. Gilberto Santa Rosa, known as “El Caballero
de La Salsa” (The Gentleman of Salsa), is known for his unique style of “soneo”
(improvisation). This year Rubén Blades
and Gilberto Santa Rosa performed a duet on “Me Cambiaron las Preguntas,” the first
song Santa Rosa ever recorded that focused on a social issue, for Santa Rosa’s
new album Irrepetible.
Rubén Blades, who grew up in the working-class
neighborhood of Carrasquilla in Panama City, is a renaissance man who has made
a significant contribution to Salsa with his socially conscious lyrics. In 1968, he traveled to New York, where he
was invited to record an album with the Pete Rodríguez Orchestra, and made
important contacts in the music world.
After obtaining a law degree in Panama, he moved to the US in 1974,
staying with his parents in Miami before moving to NYC, where he was soon working
with band leaders Ray Barretto and Larry Harlow. When Héctor Lavoe left his position as lead
vocalist for the Willie Colón Orchestra, Blades took the spot, and their 1978
album Siembra became the best-selling Salsa record to date. He won his first of six GRAMMY Awards in 1986
for Escenas in the Best Tropical Latin Performance. Last November he received his second Latin
GRAMMY for Best Singer-Songwriter Album of the Year for his album Songs of
Underdevelopment. He has appeared in
numerous films, including “Crossover Dreams” (1985), “The Milagro Beanfield
War” (1988), “All the Pretty Horses” (2000) and “Once Upon a Time in Mexico”
(2003). He was Panama’s Minister of
Tourism from 2004 to 2009.
Gilberto Santa Rosa, born in Carolina, Puerto Rico,
watched El Gran Combo on television and as a teenager studied sax and trumpet
at the Escuela Libre de Música de San Juan.
He founded his first musical group, La Evolución 65, which later would
become La Potencia Orchestra. After two
years with La Grande Orchestra, he made a name for himself singing with Don
Perigñón, Manolito Rodríguez’s Fantasía Boricua, Tommy Olivencia’s La
Primerísima and the Puerto Rico All-Stars.
With Willie Rosario he achieved major success with such hits as “Lluvia”
and “Botaron la pelota.” In the mid-1980s,
Santa Rosa led his own orchestra and released four albums before signing with
Sony BMG, which is still his label. His
delivery and talent for lyrical improvisation spurred the Salsa movement,
revolutionizing the genre and launching the pioneering singer to an
international level. In 1995, he made
history when he became the first tropical music singer to perform at Carnegie
Hall, and in 1998 he recorded the first Salsa album with classical orchestra,
Salsa Sinfónica with the Orquesta Sinfónica de Venezuela. Santa Rosa topped Billboard’s music charts
with 1999’s stand-out Expresión. His
success continued with the albums Romántico, Intenso, Viceversa, Sólo Boleros,
Auténtico and 2006’s Directo al corazón, which won both GRAMMY and Latin GRAMMY
Tickets for Una Sola Salsa with Ruben Blades and Gilberto Santa Rosa on Saturday, February 26, 2011 at 8pm are: $105, $95 and $75 and can
be purchased by calling the Lehman Center box office at 718.960.8833 (Monday
& Wednesday – Friday, 10am–5pm, closed on Tuesdays, and beginning at 12 noon
on the day of the concert), or through 24-hour online access at
www.LehmanCenter.org. Lehman Center is
accessible by #4 or D train to Bedford Park Blvd. and is off the Saw Mill River
Parkway and the Major Deegan Expressway.
Free on-site parking is available.