Annotation

Born/Nació: Ramón Santamaría Rodríguez; La Habana (Havana), Cuba

Annotation last modified on 2007-04-18 02:33 UTC.

Wikipedia

Ramón "Mongo" Santamaría Rodríguez (April 7, 1917, in Havana, Cuba – February 1, 2003 in Miami, Florida) was a rumba quinto master and an Afro-Cuban Latin jazz percussionist. He is most famous for being the composer of the jazz standard "Afro Blue," recorded by John Coltrane among others. In 1950 he moved to New York where he played with Perez Prado, Tito Puente, Cal Tjader, Fania All Stars, etc. He was an integral figure in the fusion of Afro-Cuban rhythms with R&B and soul, paving the way for the boogaloo era of the late 1960s. His 1963 hit rendition of Herbie Hancock's "Watermelon Man" was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1998.

Mongo Santamaría was one of a handful of Cuban congueros ("conga players") who came to the United States in the 1940s and '50s. Other notable congueros who came to the U.S. during that time include Armando Peraza, Chano Pozo, Francisco Aguabella, Julito Collazo, Carlos Vidal Bolado and Modesto Durán. Many consider Santamaría to have been the greatest conga drummer of the twentieth century.

Santamaría inspired the stage name of Japanese actor Yūsuke Santamaria. Additionally, his name is used as a pun in the film Blazing Saddles. When the character Mongo enters a scene, a Spanish-speaking peasant cries, "Mongo! Santa Maria!" before fleeing in terror.

He is buried in Woodlawn Park Cemetery and Mausoleum (now Caballero Rivero Woodlawn Park North Cemetery and Mausoleum) in Miami, Florida.

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Discography

Album

Year Title Artist Rating Releases
1955 Drums and Chants Mongo Santamaría 3
1959 Mongo Mongo Santamaría 1
1959 Sabroso! Mongo Santamaría 1
1963 Watermelon Man Mongo Santamaría 1
1965 El Pussy Cat Mongo Santamaría 1
1967 Hey! Let's Party Mongo Santamaría 1
1968 Soul Bag Mongo Santamaría 2
1969 Afro-American Latin Mongo Santamaría 1
1969 Hey Sister Mongo Santamaría 2
1969 Workin' on a Groovy Thing Mongo Santamaría 1
1970 Feelin' Alright Mongo Santamaría 1
1970 Mongo '70 Mongo Santamaría 1
1973 Fuego Mongo Santamaría 1
1975 Afro-Indio Mongo Santamaría 1
1976 Sofrito Mongo Santamaría 2
1976 Ubane Mongo Santamaría & Justo Betancourt 2
1977 Dawn (Amanecer) Mongo Santamaría 1
1978 A La Carte Mongo Santamaría 1
1979 Red Hot Mongo Santamaría 2
1990 Mongo Introduces La Lupe Mongo Santamaría 2
1992 Mambo Mongo Mongo Santamaría 1
1993 Mambomongo Mongo Santamaría 1
1993 Mongo Explodes / Watermelon Man! Mongo Santamaría 1
1993 Our Man in Havana Mongo Santamaría 1
1994 At the Black Hawk Mongo Santamaría 1
1995 Mongo Returns Mongo Santamaría 1
1999 Mongo '70 / Mongo at Montreaux Mongo Santamaría 1
2007 Mongo Explodes Mongo Santamaría 1
Afro-Indio / A la carte Mongo Santamaría 1
Mongo Santamaría Mongo Santamaría 1
Olé Ola Mongo Santamaría 1
Soy Yo Mongo Santamaría 1
Summertime Mongo Santamaría 1

Album + Compilation

Year Title Artist Rating Releases
1989 Afro Roots Compilation Mongo Santamaría 1
1995 Mongo's Greatest Hits Compilation Mongo Santamaría 1
1999 Skin on Skin: The Mongo Santamaría Anthology (1958-1995) Compilation Mongo Santamaría 1
1999 Mongo's Way / Up From the Roots Compilation Mongo Santamaría 2
2000 Mongo Santamaría's Greatest Hits Compilation Mongo Santamaría 1
2001 The Best of the Fania Years Compilation Mongo Santamaría 1
Mongo Santamaría's Greatest Hits Compilation Mongo Santamaría 1
Mucho Mambo Mongo Compilation Mongo Santamaría 1

Album + Live

Year Title Artist Rating Releases
1971 Mongo at Montreux Live Mongo Santamaría 2
1974 Live at Yankee Stadium Live Mongo Santamaría 2
1990 Live at Jazz Alley Live Mongo Santamaría 2
1990 Mongo at The Village Gate Live Mongo Santamaría 5 1
2003 Montreux Heat! Live Mongo Santamaria 1

Unspecified type

Year Title Artist Rating Releases
Afro Blue: The Picante Collection Mongo Santamaría 1
Brazilian Sunset Mongo Santamaria 1

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