Adalberto Santiago

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Adalberto Santiago
Adalberto Santiago in 2011
Adalberto Santiago in 2011
Background information
Birth nameAdalberto Santiago Berrios
Also known asSalsero69
Born (1937-04-23) 23 April 1937 (age 83)
Ciales, Puerto Rico
InstrumentsBass, Guitar, Guiro and Maracas
Years active1956-present
LabelsFania, Inca Records, Cotique Records
Associated actsRay Barretto, Fania All-Stars, Willie Rosario, Chuito Velez, Celia Cruz, Johnny Pacheco, Hector Lavoe, Willie Rodriguez, Yayo El Indio, Orestes Vilato, Los Kimbos, Louie Ramirez, Típica 73, Papo Lucca, Johnny Rivera, Tony Vega

Adalberto Santiago is an internationally known Salsa singer.

Santiago was born on April 23, 1937, in Pozas barrio in Ciales, Puerto Rico.


Adalberto's relaxed and flawless lead vocals are among the best in the Salsa genre of Latin music. His early influences included the great Cuban vocalists Beny Moré and Miguelito Cuní. Santiago started his professional career singing with trios and playing guitar and bass. After stints with the bands of Chuíto Vélez, where he was called "The Puerto Rican Elvis Presley", Willie Rosario and Willie Rodriguez, his career reached new heights when he joined Ray Barretto's band. Between 1966 and 1972, Adalberto made seven studio albums with Ray Barretto that contained hit songs like "Quitate La Mascara" and "Alma Con Alma". During this time period he also became an original founding member of the Salsa "super-group" The Fania All-Stars. In late 1972, Adalberto and four other members of Barretto's band departed to found Típica 73. He appeared on three of their albums before disagreement over musical direction led him, and three other band members, to split during the mid-70s to form Los Kimbos. Meanwhile, Santiago sang lead vocals on two critically acclaimed charanga albums, Fantasía Africana/African Fantasy and Our Heritage - Nuestra Herencia, by flautist, composer and producer Lou Pérez.[1]

Los Kimbos band and had a sound reminiscent of both the pre-split Ray Barretto band and Típica 73. With them, Adalberto recorded 1976's Los Kimbos and The Big Kimbos With Adalberto Santiago in 1977. That year he also made his solo debut on Adalberto, which was produced by Ray Barretto and contained two of his own compositions. Los Kimbos continued under the leadership of legendary timbales player Orestes Vilató. Santiago sang lead on one track on Louie Ramírez y Sus Amigos by Louie Ramírez. In 1979, Adalberto and Ramírez co-produced his solo follow-up, Adalberto Featuring Popeye El Marino. The same year, he reunited with Ray Barretto on Rican/Struction. Ray produced Adalberto's next solo album, Feliz Me Siento, the following year. Sonora Matancera member, Javier Vázquez, produced, arranged, directed and played piano on the rootsy Adalberto Santiago, which was Adalberto's contribution to the early 80s típico (typical) revival. In 1982, he teamed up with bandleader/bongo player Roberto Roena for Super Apollo 47:50. Santiago co-produced Calidad with Papo Lucca, who also played piano, arranged one track and oversaw musical direction. His Cosas Del Alma was an album of lush boleros which included his third recorded version of the classic "Alma Con Alma" (previously contained on Barretto's The Message and Gracias ), and featured arrangements made by Tito Puente, Ray Santos and Alberto Naranjo, among others. He returned to harder-edged urban salsa in 1985 on Más Sabroso.

Adalberto did his own mature version of salsa romántica on the classy Sex Symbol, with production, arrangements, musical direction and piano by the ubiquitous Isidro Infante. This album produced one of Santiago's biggest solo hit songs "La Noche Mas Linda Del Mundo" In 1990, he again performed "Alma Con Alma", this time arranged by Infante in a salsa romántica style for Louie Ramírez's second album entitled Louie Ramírez y Sus Amigos.

Santiago has written songs for a number of the albums on which he has appeared, both as lead singer and solo artist, and provided compositions for other artists to record, such as Joe Cuba. He has appeared in Robin William's movie "Moscow on The Hudson" and provided music for Al Pacino's "Carlito's Way" as well as appearing as himself in the film Our Latin Thing.

Adalberto has remained true to his Latin roots and a statement he made in 1977 is still relevant in the 2000s: "I want to bring a truly Latin message to the people; this is what I do best and the structure of Salsa is best suited to my singing style".

Adalberto, now in his 80s, continues to record and perform in the US, Europe and South America. He is celebrating 60+ years as a professional musician. His album total is at 90+ (see below) and his contributions in chorus or "coro" is in the hundreds including Willie Colon and Ruben Blades' "Siembra" the biggest selling Salsa album of all time. He resides in his native Puerto Rico and in New York City. His nephews Johnny Rivera and Tony Vega are also notable Salsa singers.


See Below For DISCOGRAPHY By Category


  • Adalberto. Fania Records; 1977
  • Adalberto Santiago Featuring Popeye El Marino. Fania Records JM 536; 1979
  • Feliz Me Siento. Fania Records; 1980
  • Adalberto Santiago. Fania Records; 1981
  • Calidad. Fania Records; 1982
  • Cosas del Alma. WS Latino 4163, 1984
  • Más Sabroso. Budda Records 011; 1985
  • Fania Dancing Club Collection #7. Fania Records; 1985
  • Sex Symbol. Mayor Music 001; 1989
  • Hay Algo En Ella. JV Music 001; 1991
  • Romantico Y Salsero, Exitos. La Ola Musical; 2009
  • Exitos. Edenways Records EDE 1310-1; 2010

With Chuito Velez[edit]

  • Chuito Velez. Chuito Velez Y Sus Estrellas Boricuas. La Flor Records; 1958
  • Chuito Velez. Hojas Muertas. DECCA Records; 1960
  • Chuito Velez. Si Pancha Plancha. La Flor Records; 1962
  • Chuito Velez. A Go-Go. SEECO Records; 1964

With Ray Barretto[edit]

  • Ray Barretto. Latino Con Soul. WS Latino 4053; 1966
  • Ray Barretto. Acid. Fania Records LP 346; 1967
  • Ray Barretto. Hard Hands. Fania Records LP 362; 1968
  • Ray Barretto. Together. Fania Records LP 378; 1969
  • Ray Barretto. Barretto Power. Fania Records 391; 1970
  • Ray Barretto. The Message. Fania Records SLP 403; 1971
  • Ray Barretto. From The Beginning. Fania Records; 1971
  • Ray Barretto. Qué Viva la Música. Fania Records 427; 1972
  • Ray Barretto. Barretto Live In New York: Tomorrow. Messidor Records 15950; 1976 *GRAMMY NOMINATION*
  • Ray Barretto. Energy To Burn. Fania Records; 1977
  • Ray Barreto. Gracias. Fania Records JM 528; 1979
  • Ray Barretto. Rican/Struction. Fania Records JM 552; 1979
  • Ray Barretto, Celia Cruz, Adalberto Santiago. Tremendo Trío!. Fania Records 623; 1983 *GRAMMY NOMINATION*
  • Ray Barretto. The Giant Of Salsa, Live 50th Anniversary. AJ Records-Sony Discos; 2001

With Típica 73[edit]

  • Típica 73. Típica 73. Inca Records SLP; 1973
  • Típica 73 (Stock Certificate Cover). Típica 73. Inca Records SLP; 1974
  • Típica 73. La Candela. Inca Records SLP 1043; 1975
  • Típica 73. Típica 73...74...75...76. Inca Records; 1978
  • Típica 73. Típica 73 Live. AJ Records; 2002

With Los Kimbos[edit]

  • Los Kimbos con Adalberto Santiago. Cotique CS 1083; 1976
  • The Big Kimbos with Adalberto Santiago. Cotique CS 1091; 1977

With The Fania All Stars[edit]

  • Fania All Stars. Live at the Red Garter, Vol. 1&2 (2LPs). Fania Records; 1968
  • Fania All Stars. Our Latin Thing. Fania Records SLP 431; 1972
  • Fania All Stars. Fania All Stars Live At The Cheetah Vol. 1&2 (2LPs). Fania Records SLP 00415 y SLP 00416; 1972
  • Fania All Stars. Super Salsa Singers, Vol. 1&2 (2LPs). Fania Records; 1977
  • Fania All Stars. Greatest Hits. Fania Records; 1977
  • Fania All Stars. Habana Jam. Fania Records FA 116; 1979
  • Fania All Stars. Commitment. Fania Records 564; 1980
  • Fania All Stars. Latin Connection. Fania Records; 1981
  • Fania All Stars. Lo Que Pide La Gente. Fania Records JM 629; 1984
  • Fania All Stars. Live In Puerto Rico, June 1994. Fania Records 684; 1995
  • Fania All Stars. Viva Colombia: En Concierto (2 CD). Latina 225; 1997
  • Fania All Stars. Hommage A Jerry Masucci. Sonido Inc.; 1997
  • Fania All Stars. Bravo 97. Sony 82351; 1997
  • Fania All Stars. Hot Sweat, The Best Of Live. Vampisoul Records;2005
  • Fania All Stars. Campeones. Codigo Music; 2010
  • Fania All Stars. Ponte Duro. Fania Records; 2010


  • Willie Rosario. Boogaloo y Guaguanco. ATCO Records; 1968
  • Willie Rodriguez. Colorin Colorao. Fonseca Records; 1968
  • Willie Rodriguez. Heat Wave. Fonseca Records; 1969
  • Larry Harlow. Hommy, A Latin Opera. Fania Records; 1973
  • Impacto Crea. Christmas. VAYA Records; 1973
  • Impacto Crea. Cobarde. VAYA Records; 1974
  • Lou Perez. Fantasia Africana. WSL Records; 1975
  • Lou Perez. Nuestra Herencia. TICO Records; 1976
  • Pancho Cristal. Super Típica De Estrellas. All-Art Records; 1976
  • Andy Harlow. Pura Salsa! Con Lo Mejor De Andy Harlow. Discos Completo, S.A.; 1977
  • Louie Ramírez. Louie Ramírez Y Sus Amigos. Cotique Records 1096; 1978
  • Linda Leida. Electricando Linda. TR Records; 1978
  • Tito Puente. Homenaje A Beny More, Vol 1&2 (2 LP's). TICO Records; 1979 *GRAMMY WINNER*
  • Mario Allison. A Fondo. FTA Records; 1979
  • Louie Ramírez. Salsero. Cotique Records 1104; 1980
  • Artistas de La Fania. Aeropuerto 81. Fania Records; 1980
  • Roberto Roena y su Apollo Sound. Super Apollo 47:50. Fania Records LP 609; 1982
  • Celia Cruz & Tito Puente. Homenaje A Beny More. VAYA Records; 1985
  • Alfredo Rodriguez. Monsieur Oh La La. Caiman Records; 1985
  • Alfredo Valdes Jr. Charanga Ranchera. The Mayor Records; 1989
  • Isidro Infante. Salsa Sudada. Valdesa Records; 1990
  • Louie Ramirez. Louie Ramirez Y Sus Amigos. CaChe Records; 1990
  • Linda Ronstadt. Frenesi. Elektra, Rhino; 1992 *GRAMMY WINNER*
  • Candido Antomattei. Candido Y Las Super Estrellas. La Plata Records; 1994
  • Orquesta Inmensidad. La Danza De Los Millones. Orlcon Records; 1995
  • David Rothschild. Lookin'Up!. Via Jazz Records; 1998
  • Son 80s. Live At S.O.B.s. Exclusivo Records; 2001
  • David Gonzalez with Larry Harlow. Sofrito. RainArt Productions; 2001
  • Papo Lucca. Festival De Boleros. Flowmusic; 2002
  • Jazz Hamilton. Jazz Hamilton Y Las Estrellas Del Pueblo. La Rosevelt Records; 2004
  • Homenaje A Frankie Ruiz. Va Por Ti Frankie! Sony Music; 2004
  • Johnny Pacheco. Entre Amigos. Bronco Records; 2005
  • Ralph Irizarry & Soncafe. Tribute. BKS Records; 2006
  • Various Artists. FANIA Soneros De Siempre Vol. 1. Universal Music; 2006
  • Johnny Cruz. Back To The Classics. Tiffany Records; 2006
  • Larry Harlow. Larry Harlow's Latin Legends Of Fania. Image Entertainment; 2007
  • Mario Ortiz All-Star Band. Tributo A Mario Ortiz. Sony Music; 2009
  • Luis Gonzalez. Tributo A Un Gigante. Tsunami Records; 2010
  • Estrellas De La Salsa. 25 Aniversario Tropical Budda Records Vol. 1. West Side Beat; 2011
  • Tribute To Ray Barretto. La Era Del Palladium. Sony Music; 2011
  • Alfredo De La Fe & Rodry-Go. Sin Limites. No Borders Entertainment; 2013
  • Edwin Clemente. Dos Generaciones En Salsa. Epacaje Records; 2015
  • Orquesta Abran Paso. Back To The 70s. Abran Paso Records; 2015
  • Orquesta Abran Paso. Salsa Radio-Activa. Abran Paso Records; 2019
  • Johnny Cruz. Trayectoria De Clasicos. Cruz Music Inc.; 2019

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Adalberto Santiago" (in Spanish). San Juan, Puerto Rico: National Foundation for Popular Culture.

External links[edit]