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Xavier Cugat

vn, voc, 1900-1990 ES, Girona
Musician / Arranger of Latin and Jazz
A.k.a. Francisco de Asis Javier Cugat Mingall de Bru y Deulofeu Luchese Liebhaber

Born: January 1, 1900, Girona, Spain Died: October 27, 1990, Barcelona, Spain Catalan-Cuban-American bandleader whom many consider to have been very influential in incorporating Latin music into popular music in the United States. Perez Prado followed in Cugat's footsteps. Cugat was born in Girona, in Catalonia (Spain). He emmigrated with his family to Cuba when he was five, and trained as a classical violinist, playing with the Orchestra of the Teatro Nacional in Havana. On 6 July 1915, Cugat and his family arrived in New York. Entering the world of show business, he played with a band called “The Gigolos” during the tango craze. Later, he went to work for the Los Angeles Times as a cartoonist, and his caricatures were later nationally syndicated. In the late 1920s, as sound began to be used in films, he put together another tango band that had some success in early short musical films. By the early 1930s, he began appearing with his group in feature films, and Cugat took his band to New York for the 1931 opening of Waldorf Astoria Hotel and it became the hotel's resident band. One of his trademarks was to hold a small Chihuahua dog while he waved his baton with the other arm. He shuttled between New York and Los Angeles for most of the next thirty years, alternating hotel and radio dates with movie appearances in films such as Week-End at the Waldorf (1945) and Neptune's Daughter (1949). In 1940, he recorded the song Perfidia with singer Miguelito Valdés which became a big hit. Cugat followed trends closely, making records for the conga, the mambo, the cha-cha-cha, and the twist when each was in fashion. His first marriage was to Rita Montaner, his second to Carmen Castillo (1929 – 1946), his third to Lorraine Allen (1947 – 28 April 1952), and his fourth to singer Abbe Lane in 1952. He and Lane performed together until their divorce in 1964. He married salsa dancer Charo on 7 August 1966. The two were the first couple to marry in the newly opened Caesars Palace on the Las Vegas Strip. Cugat did not lose sleep over artistic compromises: “I would rather play Chiquita Banana and have my swimming pool than play Bach and starve.” Cugat died of heart failure at age 90 in Barcelona in his native Catalonia, Spain.

  • Violin
  • Vocals
  • Latin
  • Jazz
  • Pop
Popular Tracks   
Bésame Mucho on Talent, 30 Original Songs: Boleros by Various Artists
Seems Like Old Times on Greatest Classics: Xavier Cugat, Guy Lombardo, Tex Beneke by Xavier Cugat, Guy Lombardo & Tex Beneke
Perfidia on The Dance Beat of Xavier Cugat by Xavier Cugat
Rum and Coca-Cola on The Dance Beat of Xavier Cugat by Xavier Cugat
Amapola on The Dance Beat of Xavier Cugat by Xavier Cugat
One Mint Julep on The Dance Beat of Xavier Cugat by Xavier Cugat
Papa Loves Mambo on The Dance Beat of Xavier Cugat by Xavier Cugat
Maria Elena on The Dance Beat of Xavier Cugat by Xavier Cugat
El Cumbanchero on The Dance Beat of Xavier Cugat by Xavier Cugat
Jungle Drums on The Dance Beat of Xavier Cugat by Xavier Cugat

Track list and 30sec audio provided by

Band Members

Title Artist Year Type
The Essential RecordingsXavier Cugat2017Compil.
Seven Classic AlbumsXavier Cugat2016Compil.
VintageXavier Cugat2011Compil.
Three Great Maestros On LatinXavier Cugat, Edmundo Ros, Stanley Black2010Compil.
Xavier CugatXavier Cugat2007Compil.
Mambo FeverXavier Cugat2006Compil.
Say "Si Si"Xavier Cugat2004Compil.
Carnival ProcessionXavier Cugat2004Compil.
The Original Latin Dance KingXavier Cugat2002Compil.
The Coconut Pudding VendorXavier Cugat2001Compil.
The War Years: 1941-1945Xavier Cugat2001Compil.
Among His Earliest 1932-1935Xavier Cugat2001Compil.
Best SelectionXavier Cugat2001Compil.
Rumba RhapsodyXavier Cugat2001Compil.
Cugat's Favorite Rumbas / Mambo At The WaldorfXavier Cugat2000Compil.
Xavier Cugat With José Luis Moneró 1946 - 1948Xavier Cugat With Jose Luis Monero2000Compil.
Live From The Waldorf-Astoria 1950-1954 (Radio Broadcasts And Transcription Discs)Xavier Cugat2000Compil.
Live From The Statler-Hilton & Roseland HotelsXavier Cugat2000Compil.
The Unheard Xavier CugatXavier Cugat2000Compil.
The Very Best Of Xavier CugatXavier Cugat2000Compil.
Jack Jack Jack 1947-1949Xavier Cugat2000Compil.
King Of Cuban Rhythm!Xavier Cugat1999Compil.
Cugat On FilmXavier Cugat1999Compil.
Weekend In Havana 1940-1947Xavier Cugat1999Compil.
Todos Sus Exitos Mas LatinosXavier Cugat1999Compil.
El Rey Del Mambo (The Gold Collection)Xavier Cugat1998Compil.
Cocktail HourXavier Cugat1998Compil.
Cugat's NugatsXavier Cugat1998Compil.
Xavier Cugat Loves To Tango!Xavier Cugat1998Compil.
My ShawlXavier Cugat & Frank Sinatra1998Compil.
Viva Cugat!Xavier Cugat1997Compil.
Dancing Party Vol. 5Xavier Cugat1997Compil.
On The Radio 1935-1942Xavier Cugat1997Compil.
Cugat & PrimaXavier Cugat & Louis Prima1996Compil.
Congas, Chihuahuas & Rumbas 1940-1945Xavier Cugat1996Compil.
El AmericanoXavier Cugat Guest: Abbe Lane1995Compil.
16 Most Requested SongsXavier Cugat1995Compil.
The Early Years 1933–1938Xavier Cugat1995Compil.
BrazilShorty Rogers, Xavier Cugat, Gary McFarland1994Compil.
Unheard Transcriptions & Air ShotsXavier Cugat1994Compil.
Bim Bam Bum: 1935-1940Xavier Cugat1994Compil.
Say Si! Si!Xavier Cugat1994Compil.
Xavier Cugat With Dinah ShoreXavier Cugat With Dinah Shore1993Compil.
El Negro ZumbonXavier Cugat, Abbe Lane - Tito Puente1992Compil.
Xavier Cugat Et Son Grand OrchestreXavier Cugat1992Compil.
Latin Music - Volume 1Perez Prado, Xavier Cugat, The Clebanoff Strings1992Compil.
Xavier CugatXavier Cugat, Perez Prado1992Compil.
Grandes ÉxitosXavier Cugat1990Compil.
"Besame Mucho"Xavier Cugat1990Compil.
Ritm'O - Rythmes LatinsXavier Cugat1989Compil.
Ritm'O TropicalLos Chocolates, Chakachas, Xavier Cugat1988Compil.
Su Música, Su VidaXavier Cugat1988Compil.
Cugat Desde El RitzXavier Cugat1988Album
Cugat 87Xavier Cugat1986Album
Rythmes TropicauxXavier Cugat1983Compil.
Con: Miguelito ValdezXavier Cugat With Miguelito Valdes1983Compil.
The Greatest Recordings Of The Big Band EraCount Basie / Charlie Spivak / Xavier Cugat1981Compil.
The Best Of Xavier CugatXavier Cugat1980Compil.
Custom DeluxeXavier Cugat1980Compil.
The Pick Of Xavier CugatXavier Cugat1979Album
The Latin Sound Of Xavier Cugat Perez Prado Tito PuenteXavier Cugat, Perez Prado, Tito Puente1978Compil.
Xavier Cugat / Abbe LaneXavier Cugat, Abbe Lane1978Compil.
Dansez Avec Xavier CugatXavier Cugat1977Compil.
Spotlight on Blue Barron, Xavier Cugat And Ina Ray HuttonBlue Barron, Xavier Cugat And Ina Ray Hutton1977Compil.
Xavier CugatXavier Cugat1976Compil.
16 Latin FavoritesXavier Cugat1976Compil.
Plays 20 Dance HitsXavier Cugat1976Compil.
Xavier Cugat Vol. 3Xavier Cugat1976Album
Cugat Grandes ÉxitosXavier Cugat1976Compil.
The Cugat TouchXavier Cugat1976Album
At His Rarest Of All PerformancesXavier Cugat1976Album
The Best Of Xavier CugatXavier Cugat1975Compil.
AdiosXavier Cugat1975Compil.
Xavier Cugat E La Sua OrchestraXavier Cugat1975Compil.
The Sugar's Combo Vol. 2Xavier Cugat1975Album
Lo Mejor De Xavier Cugat (The Sugar's Combo)Xavier Cugat1975Album
Xavier CugatXavier Cugat1974Compil.
Disco De OroXavier Cugat1973Compil.
LinodilHermanos Carrion, Los Teen Tops, Xavier Cugat, Les Elgart And His Orchestra1972Single
Cugat Latin Custom 20Xavier Cugat1971Compil.
The Best Of Xavier Cugat - Super Custom DeluxeXavier Cugat1970Compil.
Midnight RosesXavier Cugat1968Album
X-CugatXavier Cugat1967Compil.
Let's Dance LatinXavier Cugat1965Single
Golden Cugat Encore Vol. 1Xavier Cugat1965Single
Miami Beach Rumba / Quiereme MuchoXavier Cugat1965Single
Cugat's Golden HitsXavier Cugat1965Compil.
Swinging Cha-Cha-ChasXavier Cugat1964Single
Plays The Music Of Ernesto LecuonaXavier Cugat1964Album
Unter Karibischer SonneHarry Belafonte, Perez Prado Und Xavier Cugat1964Compil.
Cugat's Golden GoodiesXavier Cugat1963Album
The Latin Rhythms Of Xavier CugatXavier Cugat1960Album
That Latin Beat!Xavier Cugat1959Single
Cucaracha Mambo / Chiu Chiu / Ojos Verdes / Tango AzulXavier Cugat1959Single
Merengue: by CUGATXavier Cugat1955Album
New Look / Cugat's NuggatsFreddy Martin / Xavier Cugat1948Single
The Adventures Of Chiquita The ChihuahuaGilbert Mack, Xavier CugatSingle
Beguin The Beguin / Brazil (Aquarela Do Brasil)Cole Porter, Ary Barroso, Bob Russell, Xavier CugatAlbum
Orquestras EspetacularesXavier CugatCompil.
Downbeat Program No. 15Xavier CugatAlbum
The Golden Sound Of Xavier CugatXavier CugatCompil.
Xavier Cugat's Latin MoodXavier CugatCompil.
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