Bobby Valentín

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Bobby Valentin
Born (1941-06-09) June 9, 1941 (age 78)
OriginOrocovis, Puerto Rico
Occupation(s)Musician and bandleader
InstrumentsBass guitar

Roberto "Bobby" Valentín (born June 9, 1941), is a musician and salsa bandleader. He is known as "El Rey del Bajo" (King of the Bass).

Early years[edit]

Valentín was born in Orocovis, Puerto Rico. He was taught by his father to play the guitar at a young age. When his mother died in 1947, he went to live with his older sister and was raised in the town of Coamo where he received his primary education and studied music. When he was 11 years old, he participated in a local talent contest with a trio that he had formed. He played the guitar and sang for the trio and they won the first place prize. One of his teachers suggested that he attend the Jose I. Quinton Academy of Music, which he did. It was there that he learned to play the trumpet.[1]

In 1956, Valentín moved with his family to New York City where he attended George Washington High School and continued to take music lessons. In 1958, he went to play for Joe Quijano but, shortly after, he played in the band of Willie Rosario, who was from the same neighborhood.[2]

Musical career[edit]

In 1963, Valentín joined Tito Rodriguez (after not being hired by Tito in a recording session because of his age, he was given a chance and was added to his regular band) and traveled twice with Tito's orchestra to Venezuela. He also made musical arrangements for Tito and at times for Charlie Palmieri, Joe Quijano, Willie Rosario, and Ray Barretto. In 1965, he formed his own band and was signed by the Fania Record Label. He recorded "El Mensajero" (The Messenger) and "Young Man With a Horn". He held his first concert in Puerto Rico during that period of time.[2]


1965- Young Man With A Horn

1966- Ritmo Pa' Gozar/El Mensajero

1967- Bad Breath

1968- Let's Turn On/Arrebatarnos

1969- Se La Comió

1970- Algo Nuevo/Something New

1971- Rompecabezas

1972- Soy Boricua

1973- In Motion

1974- El Rey Del Bajo

1975- Va A La Carcel

1976- Afuera

1977- Musical Seduction

1978- La Boda De Ella

1979- Manuel Garcia

1980- El Gato

1981- Siempre En Forma

1982- Presenta Al Cano Estremera

1983- Brujeria

1984- En Acción

1985- Algo Excepcional

1986- Part Time Lover

1988- Gigolo

1989- Mas Amor

1991- Como Nunca

1997- Symbol Of Prestige

2001- La Gran Reunion

2004- Vuelve A La Carcel

2008- Evolution

2016- Mi Ritmo Es Bueno

2018- Mind Of A Master

Later years[edit]

Valentin continues to record and play with his band, he released "La Gran Reunion" (The Grand Reunion). In 2004, Valentin's "En Vivo Desde Bellas Artes" was released in DVD form as was his 35 Anniversary "Vuelve a la Carcel." As of 2006, Valentin's "El Caiman" can be heard (or played) in the video game Scarface. In 2008 he released his album "Evolution." After an eight-year break he released his album "Mi Ritmo Es Bueno." In 2018 he released an album that took him back to his Latin Jazz routes titled "Mind of a Master." As of 2019 he continues having concerts around the world.

See also[edit]



Bobby Valentin did not write Descarga Fania. That song was written by Ray Barretto for his album Latino Con Soul and the track was titled Trompeta y Trombon. Bobby Valentin did the arrangements for the Fania All Star version titled Descarga Fania. The track include the same chorus and format.

External links[edit]