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Larry Harlow excelled at an early age at various instruments. The music and culture of New York’s Latino community led him to Cuba where he began an intense study of Afro-Cuban music. Harlow, who is known for his innovative blend of Afro-Cuban and jazz styles of piano playing, studied music in the 1950s in Cuba but was unable to complete his degree before the Cuban Revolution forced him to leave the island. Larry and his orchestra, Orquesta Harlow, was the second orchestra signed to the Fania label. Harlow also produced over 106 albums for various artists and over 50 albums on his own besides the ones he produced for Fania. Larry Harlow continues to perform with Fania Among his most popular albums were Abran Paso and Tributo a Arsenio Rodriguez with Ismael Miranda as the lead singer. Larry's opera Hommy (inspired by the Who 's Tommy ) was credited as integral to Celia Cruz 's comeback (from an early retirement). In other firsts, Harlow was the first piano player for the legendary salsa group known as the Fania All-Stars , generally regarded as the seminal and most-important Salsa group to date, and Fania's first record producer. He also appeared with the Fania All-Stars in the movies Our Latin Thing (Nuestra Cosa) , Live in Africa , and Salsa. One of the highlights of the film Our Latin Thing is the Orquesta Harlow 1971 performance of Abran Paso in front of an exuberant and dancing audience in East Harlem with a baby faced Ismael Miranda on vocals. [3]

This group of artists did their duty with a recording that took a place of honor in the history of Afro-Caribbean music, with a radiant performance that captured the attention and imagination of salsa fans around the world.

Harlow started studying piano at the age of five. He grew up with his younger brother Andy in a mixed Jewish and Puerto Rican neighbourhood. Harlow attended the Music and Art High School in Manhattan, where he was classically trained in piano, organ, oboe, English horn, flute, bass, harmony and composition. He converted to jazz and became an accomplished jazz pianist.
Hearing Latin music emanating from record stores in New York's Spanish Harlem captured Harlow's imagination: he started researching the music, seeking-out Latin musicians and performing in young street bands. While majoring in music at Brooklyn College, he spent his first Christmas vacation in Havana, where he began a love affair with Cuban music and culture. He returned to Cuba for nearly three years to study and research the island's music.
Back in New York City, Harlow started working with established Latin bands. He decided to found his own and after an eight-month hunt for the right musicians, his first Orchestra Harlow made its debut at New York's Chez Jos' Club.

Orchestra Harlow Gettin Off BajandoteOrchestra Harlow Gettin Off BajandoteOrchestra Harlow Gettin Off BajandoteOrchestra Harlow Gettin Off Bajandote