Music in mourning
The world of music, more specifically salsa, has lost one of its greatest stars later this year 2022 and is none other than the unforgettable Lalo Rodriguez, who leaves a huge void after his unfortunate departure. In view of the unfortunate things that happened to the humanity of the great artist, we want to take this opportunity to remember the most important of his musical work and the importance of the legacy left by him.
A little of his biography
Ubaldo Rodríguez Santos, better known as Lalo Rodríguez, was born in Río Piedras, Puerto Rico on May 16, 1958 in the family formed by his parents José Rodríguez and Magdalena Santos. As a child, he soon started singing in music festivals and radio and television shows, in which he already showed the great talent that would carry him for the rest of his life. So much so that, a few years later, he was already part of his first musical group, the Tempo Moderno Orchestra.
When he was 15 years old, he received the necessary support to move to New York City, a place where some of the biggest salsa stars of the time were located. While there, he joined Eddie Palmieri‘s band and provided vocals for several songs on the album ”Sun of Latin Music”, which became the first salsa album to win a Grammy. The following year, the artists would team up again to create ”Unfinished masterpiece”, which got a nomination for the aforementioned awards. At that time, it was Palmieri himself who named him ”Lalo” for the first time.
After walking away from Palmieri, he participated in the Machito Grillo’s orchestra, with whom he recorded the album ”Fireworks”. Incredibly, this album also got a Grammy nomination, which represented fabulous numbers for Lalo. Upon coming of age, he already had three albums, a Grammy won and two Grammy nominations.
During these years, Lalo recorded a significant amount of albums and was beginning to be considered as one of the precursors of romantic and erotic salsa, a subgenre that was beginning to gain much more notoriety in those years. One of the biggest hits of his entire career was the song ”Ven devórame otra vez”, which won him a Lo Nuestro Award in the category of Tropical Song Of The Year and reached very good positions in the Latin Music charts.
In the 1990s, he continued working hard in his career, resulting in the albums ”Nací para cantar” and ”Estoy aquí”, with which he won gold and platinum records due to the large number of copies sold. These were the last record productions of the artist to be released to the public.
Lalo never stopped being active on stages of all types, both in his native Puerto Rico and in other countries around the world. In 2020, it was announced that he was going to release a new album and already had a song selection to include in the material, although no further details had been offered.
Unfortunately, fate would not allow him to go forward with his plans and he was found dead near a basketball court in Carolina, Puerto Rico. One of the first relatives to make an appearance was his road manager.
After knowing that Lalo was found dead, his road manager Francisco Pérez, who had been working with the artist for several years. He indicated that he had communicated with him that same day and they had agreed to meet, but instead, he received the unfortunate news about his death.
During the following days, many artists expressed their sorrow for the departure of the singer and highlighted his great talent in life, such as Víctor Manuelle, Elvis Crespo, Arnaldo Vallellanes, among many others.
By Johnny Cruz, ISM Correspondents, New York, New York City