Latin Music USA

S1 E6 | CLIP

The Legends: Celia Cruz

The addition of Celia Cruz to Fania brought some show biz glamour for the record label. LATIN MUSIC USA airs Friday, April 28 and Friday, May 5 at 9/8C on PBS (check local listings).

AIRED: October 12, 2009 | 0:02:11
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TRANSCRIPT

SMITS: Fania's rise to the top of the Latin scene

had started in the streets,

but at the same concert in Puerto Rico,

Masucci presented the new dazzling jewel

he had recently added to the Fania crown,

the legendary Cuban singer Celia Cruz.

(singing "Bemba Colora")

FELICIANO: She had a powerful voice.

She had everything.

She had that African heritage,

and that's what she exposed.

She was...

she was rhythm, she was, she was...

she was salsa.

SMITS: Cruz's story reached back to the radio stations

of 1940s Cuba.

When she graduated into the nightclubs of Havana,

American tourists, including Jerry Masucci,

were entranced by her voice.

I just always loved Celia

and I-I really wanted her to come and... to our label.

Jerry went wild for Celia, you know.

He went wild for Celia.

(audience singing along)

SMITS: By bringing Cruz to the label,

Masucci introduced the star to a new generation,

and Fania gained not only a singular talent

but some old-school showbiz glamour.

(singing "Bemba Colora")

Muchas gracias.

(cheers and applause)

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