Night of Nostalgia : Three veterans of Latino pop perform tonight at Universal Amphitheatre.
Thousands of middle-aged Latinos are bound to sigh nostalgically tonight when Mexican singers Jose Jose, Armando Manzanero and Marco Antonio Muniz perform at the Universal Amphitheatre.
Entitled “Noche Bohemia,” which translates from Spanish to Bohemian Night, the concert will bring together three veterans of Latin pop whose careers are marked by some formidable hits, mostly from the 1960s and ‘70s. Also on the bill is New Age pianist Raul di Blasio.
But the three veterans are the ones who opened the path for younger Latino performers such as Luis Miguel and Enrique Iglesias.
Of the singers, the most successful is Jose Jose, who at 51 enjoys an almost legendary status all over Latin America. Although he doesn’t compose his own material, his take on songs, such as “Payaso” and “El Triste,” are forever associated with his emotionally raw vocal delivery.
Jose Jose (his real name is Jose Romulo Sosa Ortiz) started his career playing the upright bass in a jazz trio. In 1969, he switched to lead vocals, left the group and released his first album, “Cuidado.”
It was a wonderful collection of hyper-romantic pop ballads marked by a strong jazz and bossa nova influence. The album wasn’t a hit, but the next one, 1970’s masterful “La Nave del Olvido,” cemented his reputation as a crooner.
Since then, Jose Jose has released dozens of records, with sales of more than 38 million copies worldwide.
“I am ever thankful to my fans for making me who I am today,” Jose Jose said last week from Miami.
“I feel I have a real commitment to them--the responsibility to make music with soul, warmth and a bit of wisdom.”
He is now recording an album with another titan of Mexican pop, singer-songwriter Juan Gabriel.
And a recent tribute album by rock en espanol stars demonstrated that Jose Jose’s music has crossed over to a new generation of fans.
“Life prepares you so that you are able to create your own happy ending,” he said.
Noche Bohemia at the Universal Amphitheatre. Tonight at 8:15. Tickets $43-$63. Call (213) 480-3232.