Orlando ‘Cachaíto’ López

The heartbeat of the Buena Vista Social Club™ with his fluid, virtuoso bass playing, Orlando ‘Cachaíto’ López hailed from a family of influential Cuban bass players: his uncle, Israel (a.k.a. Cachao) together with his father Orestes (a.k.a. Macho) created the mambo with members of Arcano’s group in the 1940’s. His uncle Cachao also played a crucial role in the development of the improvisational Afro-Cuban jazz style known as descarga of which Cachaíto was a master. An amazingly versatile musician, Cachaíto played classical music with Cuba’s Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional, Cuban jazz and pop with Irakeke, doo wop with Los Zafiros and descarga with Los Amigos . His warm presence can be heard on all but one of the 14 tracks on the original Buena Vista Social Club studio album and he has since been a fixture on virtually all of the associated tours and recording sessions. His own experimental World Circuit album “Cachaíto” (2001) is regarded by many critics as one of the finest releases in the Buena Vista series. Cachaíto was the bedrock of Ibrahim Ferrer’s and Rubén González’s bands and in his last years he kept the groove in the Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club™. He died in Havana in 2009, at the age of 76.