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Died On This Date (May 31, 2000) Tito Puente

Posted by themusicsover on May 31, 2010

Tito Puente
April 20, 1923 – May 31, 2000

Born in New York to Puerto Rican parents, Tito Puente became one of the most influential Latin Jazz and mambo musicians. His energetic albums and performances were revered the world over. After serving in the Navy during WWII, Puente returned to New York and used his GI Bill to study music at the Juilliard School Of Music, thus launching a career that would span 50 years. Over his career, he received five Grammys, the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, the Key to New York City, an induction into the National Congressional Record, a Smithsonian Medal, but perhaps most important, he was immortalized appearing as “himself” in The Simpsons’ famous “Who Shot Mr. Burns” episode. Puente suffered a heart attack following a show in Puerto Rico and died during heart surgery back in New York City on May 31, 2000.

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