Percussion master and beloved bandleader Ray Mantilla passed away on March 21, 2020. He was born in 1934 in the rhythm rich, dance-crazed atmosphere of the South Bronx where Afro-Cuban rhythmic forms transmogrified with jazz harmonies and sensibilities in the streets, the homes and dance halls. By 21, Mantilla was on the bandstand playing conga drums along with contemporaries Eddie Palmieri and Ray Barretto, playing that unique Neo-Nuyorican synthesis known as ‘salsa’.
Let’s celebrate Ray Mantilla’s life listening to his wonderful music. A gift to the world. Enjoy our playlist!