Rey Ruiz. El tipo's tremendo salsero.
His musical career started 90 miles east of Key West in Havana, Cuba. As a kid, the baby-faced singer appeared on countless national television programs showcasing his incredible range.
He enrolled in the country's famed Conservatorio de Música. And soon, he was headlining a show at the Habana Libre Hotel. Fast-forward a few years and el Rey's touring the globe, playing gigs with Cabaret Tropicana.
In fact, it was on a 1989 tour that Ruiz said no mas to the communist regime, and defected while in the Dominican Republic. A few years later, he found himself on US soil with a Sony Tropical record deal.
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In 1992, Ruiz released his self-titled debut. It went platinum. Both Billboard and Premios Lo Nuestro recognized his work with several awards that year. And in 1993, Salsa Tropical named him "New Salsa Singer of the Year."
Now eleven albums later, Ruiz is still a salsa heavyweight.
Rey Ruiz. Thursday, September 22. Fillmore Miami Beach, 1700 Washington Ave., Miami Beach. The concert begins at 8 p.m. and tickets cost $13.50 plus fees via livenation.com. Call 305-673-7300 or visit fillmoremb.com.