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Ismael Santiago the “Mago de la Sinfonía” (“Wizard of the Symphony”), also the name given to the accordion in Puerto Rico, was born in 1910 Aibonito, in the heart of the island. He had several professions, including newspaper cartoonist and even circus boxer, simultaneously developing his talent as a multi-instrumentalist with small local groups. In 1942 he moved to New York, where he became a figure of the Latin music circuit; first as a trumpet player and then with his accordion, earning the instrument a prominence previously unheard of. From then on he was an unavoidable musician in all the recordings of traditional music that were made in New York in the 1950s.

Yannis Ruel

Ismael Santiago y sus Pleneros Biography Gallery
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