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Edmundo Ros and His Orchestra

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Biography

Born in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, Ros’ mother was an African-Venezuelan; his father was Scottish. Ros’ parents separated not long after he was born, and he was enrolled into a military school, where he became interested in music and learned to play the euphonium or bombardin. From 1927 to 1937 his family lived in Caracas, Venezuela. He played in a military band for four years. Later, he received a music scholarship from the government. In June 1937, he moved to London, England to study classical music at the Royal Academy of Music. He soon returned to playing popular music and also recorded several sides as a sideman to Fats Waller who was visiting London in 1938.

In 1939, he formed his own rumba band, “Rumba With Ros”. In 1941, he gained recognition with the track “Los Hijos de Buda” and was playing regularly at the elegant Coconut Grove club on Regent Street, which attracted members of high society.

In 1946, he owned a club, a dance school, a record company and an artist’s agency. His band grew to 16 musicians. His album The Wedding Samba sold three million copies in 1949.

In 1951, he bought the Coconut Grove and renamed it Edmundo Ros’ Dinner and Supper Club. The club became popular for its atmosphere and music; it closed in 1965. From 1964 to 1968 he was the owner of the internationally known and very exclusive Edmundo Ros Club on Regent Street.

His album Rhythms of The South (1957) was one of the first high-quality LP stereo records. He was with Decca records from 1944 to 1974.

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