Miguelito Cuní. Pinareño recognized among the best soneros of Cuba, who shared the stage with Benny Moré, Arsenio Rodríguez, Félix Chapotín, Richard Egües, Enrique Jorrín, among others.
Miguel Arcángel Conill, better known as Miguelito Cuní (Pinar del Río, May 8, 1917 – Havana, March 3, 1984), was a Cuban music singer. He was one of the emblematic voices of Cuban son in the 1940s and 1960s.
He was born in Pinar del Río, the westernmost province of the island of Cuba, into a humble family.
During his school days he dedicated himself to the exercise of minor trades to help support the family. In 1932, at the age of fifteen, he began as a vocalist in the group “Los Carameleros”.
Soon after, he was the vocalist of Septeto Lira, Septeto Caridad and other groups in his province.
In 1938, already in Havana, he joined Arsenio Rodríguez’s group, and also worked actively with the orchestras “Melodías del 40” and Arcaño y sus Maravillas, making recordings and performing live and on the radio.
During the forties he developed an intense artistic life, he lived two years in Panama and in 1949 he settled in New York, as director of the orchestra of trumpeter Félix Chappottín.
He worked with Cuban music icons such as Beny Moré and in 1956 he traveled to Caracas to work with the “Bárbaro del Ritmo” with the group “La Tribu”. In 1960 he returned to New York, where he made several presentations, including the famous “Palladium”.
He returned to Cuba in 1966 where he founded his own group.
He participated in the film “Nosotros, la música” and other documentaries.
Some of the melodies that reached popularity in his voice were Con maña se rompe, No hay amor sin caridad, Viejo Socarrón, Nos estamos alejando, Canallón, Quimbombó, Yo sí como candela, Ay qué Canuto, Ya tú ves campeón, Cuento na’ ma, Mi son, mi son, mi son, mi son, Alto Songo, Canto al monte, Cuchillo para la piña cubana, Sacando palo del monte, Camina y prende el fogón, Rompe Saragüey, Convergencia, La protesta de Baraguá, Todos bailan con la guajira, Cárdenas, Guachinango, El carbonero, among others, most of them recorded with the group Chappottín y sus Estrellas, a group with which he achieved great projection and in which he sang until his death.
In his last recording he interpreted the bolero “Lágrima” from the long-playing record entitled “De nuevo Arcaño”. His last trip abroad was to Mexico in 1982.
Besides being a singer, he ventured into the world of musical composition, of his authorship are cited: Congo africano, Ay mamita!, Batanga africana, A bailar con la guajira.
Sones montunos from the late 1950’s, the boleros: Lloró Changó, Toque santo, Las ansias mías, A ti, Benny Moré.
And the guaracha “Esto no se ve”, among other titles.
He died in Havana on March 3, 1984, three months after his dear friend and companion of countless days, Félix Chapotín, who had passed away on December 21, 1983.
Miguelito Cuní was admired by all those who knew him, highlighted by all his friends and close ones as a man of excellent human qualities, in homage to his trajectory the Commander of the Revolution, Juan Almeida composed the lyrics “Este son homenaje”, which was interpreted by the singer-songwriter Pablo Milanés.
In the artistic field, he deserved the recognition of his colleagues and thousands of admirers, and in the personal field, those who treated him remember him as a man of impeccable words and good speech, Miguelito Cuní was a true Creole gentleman.
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