We are sad to report the death of Yomo Toro, a virtuoso of the Puerto Rican cautro that resembles a mandolin. He was a major player in the Latin music scene in New York for a half century.
Toro died on Saturday on June 30th in the Bronx at the age of 78. He had performed and recorded with leading stars of New York salsa in the 1960’s and 1970’s including Willie Colón, Hector Lavoe, Larry Harlow and the supergroup Fania All-Stars. One of the standouts in Colón’s long recording career was a Christmas themed salsa record “Asalto Navideño” that featured parranda from the Puerto Rican caroling tradition.
Afropop actually had the pleasure of visiting Mr. Colón’s home in the Bronx in the mid 1990’s where he played parrandas and related memories of Christmas time of his youth growing up in Puerto Rico.
Here are a couple of tracks to remind longtime fans (and new listeners) of Toro’s inimitable brilliance. He will be sorely missed.
and here is that Afropop show with Yomo.