Havana, Cuba – Cuban media reported that composer and flute player Richard Egües,
who wrote the popular cha-cha-chá “El Bodeguero”, died at 82 on September 4th in
Eduardo Richard Egües Martínez, winner of the National Music Award, was born on
October 26th, 1926, in Cruces, a town in Cienfuegos province.
He started to study guitar, flute, piano, and clarinet with his father when he
was a little boy, and entered the Orquesta Monterrey as pianist when he was 14
At 16, he played in the “Hermanos García” and “Ritmo y Alegría” orchestras. In
1952 he became the flute player for the legendary
Orquesta Aragón, in which he
remained until 1985, when he founded his own orchestra.
With Richard Egües and Rafael Lay,
Orquesta Aragón reached a very distinctive sound which turned
it into one of the main traditional orchestras of the 20th century in Cuba.
Egües’ flute improvisations became so famous that nearly all flute players in
traditional orchestras, not only in Cuba, but abroad, began to imitate him.
As a composer, his greatest cha-cha-chá hits were “El Bodeguero” and “Bombón chá.”
He also composed son montunos and danzones, all traditional Cuban music forms.