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Johnny Pacheco, an idol in world of salsa, dies at age 85

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Pacheco was the music director, composer, arranger and producer, overseeing the label’s style of music that got here to be generally known as salsa.

NEW YORK — Salsa idol Johnny Pacheco, who was a co-founder of Fania Records, Eddie Palmieri’s bandmate and backer of music stars akin to Rubén Bladés, Willie Colón and Celia Cruz, died Monday. He was 85.

He had been hospitalized in New York a number of days earlier for pneumonia, his spouse, Maria Elena “Cuqui” Pacheco, mentioned on the artist’s Facebook account.

Fania Records tweeted that the musician was “the man most responsible for the genre of salsa music. He was a visionary and his music will live on eternally.”

In a submit on his social media, Blades mentioned that “Pacheco leaves us with an important musical legacy, represented by all the collaborations he made during his distinguished career.”

Singer Marc Anthony lamented the loss of Pacheco, calling him “maestro of maestros” and a very good buddy.

“Your sense of humor was contagious and I am forever grateful for your support, for the opportunity to be in your presence and for your amazing legacy,” Anthony wrote.

Pacheco was born March 25, 1935, in the Dominican Republic right into a household of musicians. In the Nineteen Forties the household moved to New York, the place he taught himself to play accordion, violin, saxophone and clarinet and studied percussion at Juilliard.

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In 1954 he shaped The Chuchulecos Boys with Palmieri on piano, Barry Rogers on trombone and different musicians who would achieve renown in the salsa scene, akin to Al Santiago, Mike Collazo and Ray Santos.

But the life-changing second got here in 1963, when Pacheco partnered with legal professional Jerry Masucci to discovered Fania Records.

Pacheco was the music director, composer, arranger and producer, overseeing the label’s style of music that got here to be generally known as salsa — a mix of Cuban mambo, guaracha and chachachá, Puerto Rican rhythms and Dominican meringue. He acquired the (*85*) Recording Academy Music Excellence Award in 2005 and was nominated for a number of Grammys and (*85*) Grammys.

“His music and legacy will endure forever and continue to inspire music creators around the world,” Gabriel Abaroa Jr., president and CEO of the (*85*) Recording Academy, mentioned in a press release.

Pacheco is survived by his spouse and their 4 kids.

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Associated Press author Sigal Ratner-Arias reported this story in New York and AP author Berenice Bautista reported from Mexico City.

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