Harry Belafonte hosts this star-studded celebration tracing the history of the popular sounds we call Latin music, from tribal celebrations in African jungles to Cuba's wild carnivals and New York City's hottest nightspots. Includes over 40 great performances by Gloria Estefan, Tito Puente, Celia Cruz, Dizzy Gillespie, King Sunny Ade, Isaac Oviedo, Ruben Blades and many more.
From Africa came the rhythms, from Spain, the melodies and harmonies. Carried across the Atlantic, they fused together in the Caribbean, where a new sound was created. In this program, Harry Belafonte travels the path of the music, visiting with performers like King Sunny Ade in Africa and Miguel Garcia Maldonado in Spain, before crossing the ocean to Cuba. In Cuba, African and Spanish cultures blended in a fiery romance that transformed the traditional sounds of each. on. Dance crazes like the mambo, cha-cha-cha and conga swept across America in the '30s and '40s. The music that came together in Cuba became an international sensation, starting with bandleaders like Desi Arnaz and Xavier Cugat, and later with Tito Puente and Celia Cruz. We see the remarkable rise of Latin music to worldwide popularity & visit with artists like Dizzy Gillespie, who integrated Latin s! ounds into his jazz, and Ruben Blades and Gloria Estefan, who are propelling Latin music into the future.