Daily 49er

Jose Feliciano comes to Carpenter Center

The Latin legend will take the stage Saturday.

Zulema Suarez, Staff Writer

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Seventy-one-year-old celebrity, musician and actor Jose Feliciano will be performing his trademark pop music, including hit song “Light My Fire,” at the Carpenter Performing Arts Center March 4.

Feliciano, born blind as one of eleven siblings in Puerto Rico, immigrated to New York City with his family when he was five years old. Feliciano used a handful of records to learn to play the accordion and the guitar and by the time he turned nine, he had performed at the Puerto Rican Theater in the Bronx.

At 17, Feliciano quit school to help his family financially by playing his music in small clubs and coffeehouses. Four years later, Feliciano gave a performance in Argentina for the Mar del Plata Festival and his performance landed him an opportunity to record an album of old Spanish songs he’d heard when he was a kid.

His career took off immediately, and after that as he became widely known throughout Mexico, South America and the Caribbean.

By the age of 23, Feliciano had won two Grammy Awards and received five nominations.

Feliciano’s cover of “Light My Fire,” originally sung by The Doors, topped charts worldwide in 1968. In the same year, Feliciano sung the National Anthem for the fifth game of the World Series, between the Cardinals and the Tigers. He was the first singer to ever stylize the anthem, opening doors for artists like Whitney Houston, Lady Gaga and Kelly Clarkson, all of whom have since then publicly sang their own stylizations of the Star Spangled Banner.

He was later honored with an engraved star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1987.

Now, Feliciano is known as “The Picasso of his Realm,” and has been awarded over 45 Platinum and Gold records, along with nine Grammy awards including Best Latin pop album five times.

Long Beach will get the chance to be apart of the next stepping stone in Feliciano’s long and prominent career this weekend, and tickets can be purchased at CPAC or at carpenterarts.org

 

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