[JPL] Legendary Father of Cuban trombone dies at 90

Arturo arturo893 at qwest.net
Mon Sep 17 11:29:50 EDT 2007


Posting this from home on Sunday night.
Re-posting today Monday morning as the JPL list rejected my home e-mail
address as i am not enrolled here with that address

Just got a call from Miami that legendary trombonist Generoso "Tojo" Jimenez
passed away Saturday night at a Miami hospital, he was 90 years of age.
Generoso was born July 17, 1917 in the central Cuban town of Cruces.  He is
considered the first improvising Cuban trombonist, for may years he was the
music dicrector for the Beny More band, Beny immortalized Tojo in his song,
Que Bueno Baile Ud when at the end of the song over a Generoso "Tojo"
Jimenez solo, he sang Generoso que bueno toca Ud, Generoso, how well you
play. In the mid-60s Tojo recorded the landmark El Trombon Majadero album
re-issued in the US by Bembe Records in the mid 90s as The Naughty Trombone.
After awaiting an exit visa from the Cuban government for over 20 years he
finally left Cuba a few years ago and was reunited with his drummer son,
Ruben "Tuti: Jimenez and other children living in Miami. Since his arrival
to Miami he played and recorded with his contemporaries, Bebo Valdes and
Cachao as wel l as Arturo Sandoval, Paquito D'Rivera and many others.

Tojo appears on hundreds of recordings including many Cuban jam sessions led
by Cachao in the late 50s.  I am sure more bio details will follow soon. I
am unable to post more details at this time as I need  to run afew errands.
Perhaps tommorrow I will forward additional info for those interested.
Arturo Gómez

here's an obit I found in Monday's Miami Herald


By WILFREDO CANCIO ISLA
Famed trombone player Generoso ''Tojo'' Jiménez, a pioneer of Cuba's popular
music, died of kidney failure Saturday in Coral Gables. He was 90.

Trombonist for legendary Cuban bandleader Beny Moré, Jiménez made his mark
in music by playing the trombone with a unique style that was both playful
and personal.

Jiménez died at 8:45 p.m. Saturday at Coral Gables Hospital. He was
hospitalized Aug. 29 but his health deteriorated and he fell into a coma
last Thursday.

''I am very sad, but I feel that I also have in me all the happiness and
love that he gave me in the last few years that I was able to be by his
side,'' said his daughter, Raquel Jiménez. ``He was an extremely loving
father and a very exceptional person, with an incredible spirit to push
forward.''

Born July 17, 1917, in Cruces, in the old Cuban province of Las Villas,
Jiménez got his first music lessons from the director of the town band and
from a piano teacher in his hometown. His got his first trombone from
friends who bought it in a pawnshop.

Together with flutist Efraín Loyola and violinist Gilberto de la Rosa,
Jiménez founded in 1939 the Orquesta Rítmica.

Jiménez stayed in Cuba after Fidel Castro seized power in the Cuban
revolution in 1959, and in 1965 recorded El Trombón Majadero, considered a
classic in contemporary Cuban music.

Eventually, Jiménez fell out of grace and was denied work because his
orchestra included musicians perceived as not fully supportive of Castro.

''They wanted me to cut sugar cane on Sundays, to stand guard duty and wear
a militiaman uniform to be able to travel to socialist countries,'' he
recalled. ``I couldn't do it.''

Jiménez stopped playing the trombone and became a roaming street vendor.

In 2003, Jiménez was allowed to travel to New York -- escorted by a Cuban
government official -- to attend a Grammy ceremony where one of his records
had been nominated.

He returned to the United States a few months later and stayed. He picked up
the trombone again and his career was reborn.

His last recording was for 90 Millas, singer Gloria Estefan's new
Spanish-language album set for release Tuesday.

Jiménez is survived by his children Ricardo, Rubén, Regla and Raquel, in
Miami; and Regina and Raúl, in Cuba; and seven grandchildren and eight
great-grandchildren.

Services will be Tuesday at 6 p.m at Funeraria Ferdinand, 2546 SW Eighth
St., Miami. Cremation will follow.
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