Singer, Percussionist, Composer, Producer and Orchestra Director
DATE OF BIRTH: September 27, 1935
PLACE OF BIRTH: San Juan, Puerto Rico
Son of José Quijano and Luz Maria Esteras, Joe Quijano was born in the capital sector of Puerta de Tierra in San Juan. At the age of eight he went to live with his family in New York. Shortly afterwards, while attending her regular academic degrees, she began learning the piano and the solfeggio in the academy that the professor Maria Luisa Lecompte maintained in Manhattan. Later, he was a disciple of Eduviges Bocanegra, who gave him classes in the study he had established in the Bronx. As a teenager, he continued his training at the Sound of Jazz School, located between 78th Street and Broadway Avenue. Finally, he expanded his studies at Columbia University. Ironically, although he became an excellent pianist, he would never perform as such in orchestra or any ensemble. He preferred to focus on percussion, having learned to play timpani, congas and bongó in an autodidactic manner since childhood.
Quijano began his musical career at the age of 13 when he joined, as a bongosero, the quintet The Mamboys From Banana Kelly Street in Bronx (1948). The group, led by teenagers Eddie Palmieri and Orlando Marín, also recorded a simple album that included the pieces "Abaniquito" and "La toalla". In 1953, when Orlando was recruited by the Army, Eddie took the lead. In parallel, since then our biography also worked "free lance" with other orchestras.
In 1956 he founded his own group, Conjunto Cachana. The name with which it baptized its famous set, corresponded then to the familiar nickname of its uncle Nicasio Quijano, who is credited to have founded the Association of Muelleros of Puerto Rico in the beginning of the decade of 1930. In Cachana Quijano had like vocalista to Paquito Guzmán. In this group it was officially released as timbalero. Although fast began to cross the crowded dance halls of the New York square, it would not be until late 1959 when he recorded for the first time. The first single (A & Q Records) included the songs "Pachanga en changa" and "Rumba en Navidad".
Later (1960), the Columbia company published its first LP, that would become classic: "The pachanga is thus danced". But prior to signing the record company in 1960, Joe Quijano had made a commitment to record some albums with the Spanoramic label. The dilemma was solved in the following way: in the recordings for this seal, the group would identify itself as Conjunto Cachana, whereas in those made for Columbia it would present like Joe Quijano and Its Orchestra. Sin and
Joe Quijano has the merit of having taken the guaguancó "Efectivamente", included in the LP "Volví a Cataño" (Spanoramic, SLP-142), published in 1965. This was the first piece that the public heard of then unknown composer Tite Curet Alonso. He also directed the rhythm section in the five recordings that Eydie Gormé recorded accompanied by the Los Panchos Trio for Columbia Records (1964-1965).
In 1967 he founded his own record label, Cesta Records. He spent an extended season of performances in San Juan, working in the Siboney Lounge of the Hotel San Jerónimo Hilton (now Condado Plaza); Chico's Bar (Hotel San Juan), 1969-1970; and in the dance halls of the Borinquen, Hyatt (1970-1973) hotels and inaugurated his Joe Quijano's Lounge in El Palmar (April 3, 1973), which he held until 1977.
He served as director of public relations for the Agency for Drug Addiction Rehabilitation (LUCHA) in New York in the transition between the 1970s and 1980s. He also performed with Charlie Palmieri at the Caribe Club of the Caribe Hilton Hotel .
In 1992, he suffered a motorcycle accident in the Piñones sector of Isla Verde, which affected his spine and, after six surgical procedures, could not fully recover. Since then, he walks supported, by a cane and has concentrated his activity in the production of danceable events of nostalgia and in the reissue of his discs in compact format. Even so, he made a successful tour of eight cities in Colombia in 1996. And in 2000 he organized a recreation of Charanga Cachana, in front of which he debuted at the Hotel Normandie in San Juan on Tuesday, October 31. At that moment, they integrated the group: Héctor «Tempo» Alomar, Harry Fraticelli, Chavela Méndez and the own Joe (singers); Eddie Perales (flutist); Manolo Navarro (pianist); Israel «Izzy» Feliú (bass player); Monchito Muñoz (timbalero); Carlos Betancourt, Carlos Gómez and Ricardo Dávila.
At the end of the first decade of the 21st century, Joe Quijano is working on a new record project.
Partial list of recordings of Joe Quijano -
"I returned to Cataño" (SLP-142), 1965. Singers: Paquito Guzmán, Willie, Chaguito and Joe. It includes his compositions "Volví a Cataño" (discharge); "To Bayamón" (son); "Acá mija" (pachanga) and "Locas por el dengue".
Productions edited under the label Cesta Records: "Introducing Joe Quijano With Strings" (CES-17), 1982.
"We II" (CES-1800BJQ), 1982. It includes his compositions "La flauta de Cachana", "Alá en mi tierra" and "I miss it".
"Basket # 13 After and Before 1960's", 2003. Compilation of themes recorded by The Mamboys of Kelly Street (1948); The Great Orchestra Cachana (1960) and Conjunto Cachana (1968).
"Untitled by Tite Curet Alonso" (2010)
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