The great Puerto Rican troubadours
--careers beginning or covering the 1930-1939 decade
In 1930, the Cuarteto Flores (of Pedro Flores) records a song in aguinaldo truya style interpreted by Pedro Marcano, Ramón Quirós and Fallito. Even though these artists weren't-- strictly speaking--troubadors, their interpretation of traditional music was routine for popular groups of the period, especially during the Nativity season.
Some of the songs that Chuito el de Cayey put on record with the Conjunto Industrias Nativas for this period was Mi Mulata [My Dark-Skinned Girl] and Cerca de Cayey [Near the town of Cayey], excerpted below .
1-José Luis Torregrosa, Historia de la Radio
Chuíto el de Bayamón
Chuíto de Bayamón opens a furrow for the seeds of the Décima by becoming the "dean of the traditional singers" with the Conjunto Industrias Nativas of don Felo and the Maestro Ladí, over the airwaves of WKAQ in 1932-35.
Chuíto sings Si Yo Fuera Alcalde, [If I were the Mayor], backed by his Trío Cialeño. The wonderful cuatro backing is provided by the great Francisco "Panchón" Ortiz Piñeiro.
Originally from Cidra, Puerto Rico, Natalia became the "dean of country song" on Puerto Rican radio. She recorded several numbers, mostrly controversias [bouts of teasing insults between troubadours] with Chuíto el de Bayamón and with Ramito.
Natalia and Chuíto together sing Llegó Chuíto y Natalia:
Here comes Ladí, Natalia y Chuíto...so that my little town can see the whole groupa / The first group that played its first song/ On the first station that there ever was in this land/ before there was television."
Natalia and Claudio Ferrer singing a controversia with relish titled Entre Suegra y Yerno [Between a Mother in law and a Son in law]. You can hear the deep voice of what may be a bordonúa in the background.
Jesús Ríos Robles
Chuíto el de Cayey
One of the best décima improvisers of his time and perhaps of all time.
Listen to Chuíto de Cayey with the conjunto Industrias Nativas en Cerca de Cayey [Near Cayey] (1933).
Visit our page dedicated to Jesús Ríos Robles here.
A popular radio program kind of like a jíbaro Amos and Andy show, was originally titled Compay Sico y Compay Tello. They were three performers: Manolín Martínez, Jesús Rivera Pérez (Mano Meco) and Modesto Navarro who made up this seminal radio program, which transmitted the music of the most brilliant performers of Puerto Rican country music on radio station WKAQ across the entire Island, beginning in 1932.
Listen to a funny repartee [in Spanish] of the three jíbaros before a judge, concluding with a mazurca:
Compay Tello: Well, mister judge, it so happens that I was so busy watching Compay Sico, who is a glutton, to make sure he wouldn't gobble up all the food we had prepared for the invited guests.
The recording Seis Caliente, with Davilita and José Vilar, was used as the theme song introducing the program for several years. In one spot the lyrics go, "...because I must end, because the record's come to its finish, and Pérez is in a big rush", referring to the announcer Jesús Rivera Pérez.
Visit the Mano Meco page [in Spanish]