Raúl Planas

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Raúl Planas
Birth name Enrique Raúl Planas Fernández
Born (1920-09-18)September 18, 1920
Camajuaní, Villa Clara, Cuba
Died February 28, 2001(2001-02-28) (aged 80)
Havana, Cuba
Genres Son, bolero
Occupation(s) Musician
Years active 1933–2001
Labels EGREM
Associated acts

Enrique Raúl Planas Fernández (September 18, 1920 – February 28, 2001) was a popular Cuban singer and songwriter. He performed and recorded with many bands and musicians, including Carlos Barbería y su Orquesta Kubavana, Sonora Matancera, Celia Cruz, Conjunto Rumbavana, Conjunto Chappottín, Charanga Rubalcaba, Rubén González, and the Afro-Cuban All Stars.

Early life[edit]

Raúl Planas was born in Camajuaní, Villa Clara province, Cuba on September 18, 1920.[note 1] At thirteen, he joined a number of son groups in his native town,[3] such as Benito De Amas, Cervantes en Remedios and others,[1] and developed into a prominent singer in both son and bolero styles.[3]


During the 1940s, Planas moved to Havana, where he joined the Juanito Roger ensemble, the Ernesto Duarte orchestra, and Carlos Barbería´s Kubavana jazz-band as a singer. He toured extensively with Sonora Matancera and Celia Cruz, in both America and Europe, and made several recordings for the Puchito, Panart and RCA Victor record labels,[3] including with Orquesta Ritmo y Melodía, directed by Roberto Puente, in 1959.[4]

In 1966, Planas joined the Rumbavana ensemble (founded in 1955), sharing vocals with Fernando González and Guido Soto. Under the direction of Joseíto González, the Rumbavana ensemble released a series of successful recordings by the EGREM label and a number of radio broadcasting studios. During this period and into the 1970s, Planas sang on many hits, such as "Te invito un momento" and "Te traigo mi son cubano".[3]

In 1982, he joined the Conjunto Tropicuba, sharing vocals at one point with Felix Baloy,[6] and then the Conjunto Chappottín. Later on, he became a member of the Rubalcaba Orchestra.[3][7] As a solo artist he released his first solo album, Señor del son, in the 1980s through Siboney.[8] In the early 1990s, he formed part of Félix Reina's charanga. After turning independent, he guested on recordings such as the CD entitled Pasaporte (winner of the EGREM Great Award in 1994), with Tata Güines and Miguel "Angá" Díaz.[3]

In 1994, Planas and Radio Progreso announcer Eduardo Rosillo approached retired pianist Rubén González—with whom Planas had already recorded the album Dos Grandes five years earlier—with the idea of recording new versions of ten songs composed by fellow Cuban pianist Lilí Martínez.[9] The resulting album, Son Inconcluso, featured a full band including bassist Orlando "Cachaíto" López and Arturo "Alambre dulce" Harvey (ex-tresero with Conjunto Chappottín),[10] among others, and was released in 1999 by EGREM.[9][11]

In 1996, Planas joined the Afro-Cuban All Stars project directed by Juan de Marcos González, and participated in the recording of A Toda Cuba le Gusta, which was nominated for the 1997 Grammy Awards.[12] This album again featured Rubén González and Orlando "Cachaíto" López, along with a big band of veteran Cuban musicians and singers such as Ibrahim Ferrer, Pío Leyva, Manuel 'Puntillita' Licea, and Félix Baloy.[12] It was the first album recorded during the consecutive sessions that would also deliver the albums Buena Vista Social Club and Introducing...Rubén González.[11]

Planas was one of the best Cuban son musicians of all time.

Juan de Marcos González.[4]

Planas also wrote songs such as: "Baila Francisca",[13] "Dicharachos Criollos",[13] "Maria Del Carmen",[14] "Me Voy a Poner Pa' Tí",[1] "Que Buenas Son",[13] "Quiéreme Mucho Caridad",[13] "Se Me Fue Mi Negrita",[15] and "Sola Estás".[15]

Planas died at his home in Pueblo Nuevo, Havana on February 28, 2001.[2][16]

Selected discography[edit]

As primary artist[edit]

  • Señor del son (Siboney, 1980s)
  • Te Invito Un Momento (EGREM, 1995)[17]
  • Para Todos Los Tiempos (Orun, 2002) – Recorded in 2000[1]
  • Tumbayaya (EGREM, 2004)[18]
  • La Vida Es Un Sueño (Connector, 2009)[3]

With Carlos Barbería y su Orquesta Kubavana[edit]

  • Que Tienes Titina? (Panart, 1950s)[19]
  • A Toda Cuba Le Gusta (Caney CCD 505, 1995) – Recorded in 1958-1959. Planas sings on tracks 2, 4, 6, 8, 12, 14, 16[20]
  • Perlas Cubanas: Yo Soy Caguairán (Vintage Music, 2014)[21]

With Orquesta Ritmo y Melodía[edit]

  • Perlas Cubanas: Raúl Planas y Orquesta Ritmo y Melodía (Vintage Music, 2014)[22]

With Conjunto Rumbavana[edit]

  • Reencuentro Entre Soneros (EGREM, 1987)[23]

With Charanga Rubalcaba[edit]

  • Fundadores Del Sabor (1995) – Planas sings on tracks 1, 3, 5, 7, 10, 12[24]

With Tata Güines & Miguel "Angá" Díaz[edit]

  • Pasaporte (Enja, 1994) – Planas sings on "Rumberos Del Ayer"[25]

With Rubén González[edit]

  • Dos Grandes: Raúl Planas & Rubén González / Con la Orquesta Jorrín (EGREM, 2000) – Recorded in 1989[15]
  • Son Inconcluso (EGREM, 1999) – Recorded in 1994;[11] reissued as Trilogía De Boleros in 2002 on the Exotica label[26]

With Afro-Cuban All Stars[edit]


  • Son Del Mundo (EGREM, 2000) – Planas sings on "Como Siento Yo" and "Juancito Trucupey"[27]
  • De Cuba Son: Roots of Buena Vista (EGREM, 2000) – Planas sings on "Rumberos Del Ayer" and "A Mi Manera"[28]
  • Cuban Superstars (Direct Source, 2004) – Planas sings on "Rumberos Del Ayer"[29]
  • Cuban All Stars - Volume 2 (Connector, 2010) – Planas sings on "Los Herederos"[30]
  • Th'is Cuba: Hot Cuban Music (Promo Sound, 2011) – Planas sings on "Rumberos Del Ayer"[31]
  • Best of Buena Vista (Arc Music, 2012) – Planas sings on tracks 5, 9, 12, 17[32]
  • El Gran Tesoro de la Musica Cubana, Vol.1 (2013) – Planas sings on "Soy Hijo del Siboney"[33]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Raúl Planas's date of birth is disputed. In the sleeve notes from the album Para Todos Los Tiempos (2002), musicologist Gabe Romero wrote that Planas was born on September 18, 1920.[1] Some sources[2][3] mention an imprecise birth date of "1933" which, if Romero is correct, would be the year when Planas is reputed to have started his singing career at the age of thirteen.[3] Other sources mention a birth date of August 8, 1924[4] or August 18, 1924.[5]


  1. ^ a b c d Romero, Gabe (New York; March 27, 2002). Sleeve notes from Para Todos Los Tiempos (in Spanish), Primienta Records 176 160 532-2. (2002).
  2. ^ a b "Raúl Planas". ecured.cu (in Spanish). Retrieved February 19, 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i Sleeve notes from La Vida Es Un Sueño, Connector CD 59871-2. (2009).
  4. ^ a b c "Los olvidados del Buena Vista Social Club". proceso.com.mx (in Spanish). Proceso. October 23, 2008. Retrieved March 17, 2017.
  5. ^ Muguercia, Alberto (1995). Sleeve notes from Te Invito Un Momento (in Spanish), EGREM CD 0072. (1995).
  6. ^ Olivares Baró, Carlos (July 2, 2001). "El son se baila con Felix Baloy". cubaencuentro.com (in Spanish). Encuentro En La Red. Retrieved March 17, 2017.
  7. ^ Angel L., Juan Carlos (December 13, 2014). "Entrevista: Guillermo Rubalcaba". elsonerodebarrio.com (in Spanish). El Sonero de Barrio. Retrieved March 17, 2017.
  8. ^ Díaz Ayala, Cristóbal (Fall 2013). "Raúl Planas" (PDF). Encyclopedic Discography of Cuban Music 1925-1960. Florida International University Libraries. Retrieved April 1, 2017.
  9. ^ a b Rosillo, Eduardo (1999). Sleeve notes from Son Inconcluso (in Spanish). EGREM Records CD0334. (1999).
  10. ^ "Conjunto Chappottín". encaribe.org (in Spanish). Enciclopedia de Historia y Cultura del Caribe. Retrieved February 23, 2017.
  11. ^ a b c Petinaud Martinez, Jorge (December 21, 2003). "En el piano, ¡Don Rubén González!". lr21.com (in Spanish). LaRed21 Cultura. Retrieved February 28, 2017.
  12. ^ a b Casavantes Bradford, Anita; Fernandez, Raúl (October 2016). "Cuba's Second Golden Age of Popular Music, 1989–2005". latinamericanhistory.oxfordre.com. Oxford Research Encyclopedias. Retrieved March 17, 2017.
  13. ^ a b c d Sleeve notes from Te Invito Un Momento, EGREM CD 0072. (1995).
  14. ^ Sleeve notes from Conjunto Rumbavana/Raúl Planas – Reencuentro Entre Soneros, EGREM LP LD–349. (1987)
  15. ^ a b c Sleeve notes from Dos Grandes: Raúl Planas & Rubén González / Con la Orquesta Jorrín, EGREM CD 0392. (2000).
  16. ^ Ramírez Bedoya, Héctor (2001). "La Mazorca Matancera se continúa desgranando". sonoramatancera.com (in Spanish). Retrieved March 17, 2017..
  17. ^ "Raúl Planas – Te Invito Un Momento". allmusic.com. Retrieved February 21, 2017.
  18. ^ Sleeve notes from Tumbayaya, Havana Nites CD HN011. (2004).
  19. ^ "Raul Planas & Orquesta Kubavana - Que Tienes Titina?". paperblog.com (in Spanish). Retrieved March 17, 2017.
  20. ^ Sleeve notes from Orquesta Kubavana – A Toda Cuba Le Gusta, Caney CCD 505. (1995).
  21. ^ "Raul Planas & Orquesta Kubavana - Yo Soy Caguairán". vintagemusic.fm. Retrieved March 17, 2017.
  22. ^ "Perlas Cubanas: Raúl Planas y Orquesta Ritmo y Melodía". vintagemusic.fm. Retrieved March 17, 2017.
  23. ^ "Conjunto Rumbavana/Raúl Planas – Reencuentro Entre Soneros". discogs.com. Retrieved February 21, 2017.
  24. ^ Sleeve notes from Fundadores Del Sabor, DISCMEDI CD DM210CD. (1995).
  25. ^ Sleeve notes from Pasaporte, Enja Enj–9019 2. (1994).
  26. ^ Sleeve notes from Trilogía De Boleros Exotica, EXTC018. (2002).
  27. ^ Sleeve notes from Son Del Mundo, EGREM CD 0393. (2000).
  28. ^ Sleeve notes from De Cuba Son: Roots of Buena Vista, EGREM CD 0397. (2000).
  29. ^ Sleeve notes from Cuban Superstars, Direct Source. (2004).
  30. ^ Sleeve notes from Cuban All Stars - Volume 2, Connector. (2010).
  31. ^ Sleeve notes from Th'is Cuba: Hot Cuban Music, Promo Sound CD 6509/1. (2011).
  32. ^ Sleeve notes from Best of Buena Vista, Arc Music CD EUCD2410. (2012).
  33. ^ "El Gran Tesoro de la Musica Cubana, Vol.1". amazon.co.uk. Retrieved March 17, 2017.

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