MADRID – Composer, producer, performer and arranger Juan Carlos Calderon has been named winner of the Prize of Honor of the 14th edition of the music awards that Spain’s Academy of Music Arts and Sciences will bestow on March 4.
The Academy Board of Directors unanimously decided to honor Calderon because, among other merits, he composed one of the 50 most important songs in the history of the Eurovision Song Contest with “Eres Tu” (It’s You), he has rubbed elbows at jazz festivals with the likes of Duke Ellington and Count Basie, and has produced Luis Miguel’s top discs.
“One of the living glories of the Spanish music scene,” the academy called him in its communique.
At the start of the 1960s Calderon, now 71, moved to Madrid, where he completed his studies as a classical pianist to take up jazz.
Even amid his rather frenzied activity as a jazz composer and musician, Calderon launched his career as a producer, arranger and musical director.
In 1968, besides working on the arrangements of “La, La, La” for the Eurovision Song Contest, he became involved in the first disc of Luis Eduardo Aute and created pieces like “Rosas en el Mar” (Roses in the Sea).
Then in the 1980s, already well established as a producer and composer, and after finishing his own album “Solea” (the title refers to a type of Flamenco music), Calderon went to America and settled in Los Angeles, where he collaborated with trumpet player Herb Alpert on recordings that were great hits in the United States.
He had no less success in Mexico and the rest of Latin America, where he has worked with artists like Ricky Martin, Chavela Vargas, and particularly Luis Miguel. EFE