Creative Person of the Week

16 Sep

Jose Feliciano was born in Lares, Puerto Rico on September 10. He is blind because of congenital glaucoma.[2] When he was five, his family moved to panish Harlem, New York,  and, at age nine, he played on the Teatro Puerto Rico.[4] He started his musical life playing accordion until a family friend, Benjamin Borges, gave him his first guitar. He played every chance he had by himself in his room for up to 14 hours a day listening to 1950s rock albums, classical guitarists such as Andrés Segovia, and jazz players such as Wes
. He later had classical lessons with Harold Morris, who earlier
had been a student with Segovia.[5] At 17, he quit school to play in clubs.

In the 1960’s Feliciano played with Joan Baez and Bob Dylan, toured Canada, Latin America and Europe.  In 1967, Feliciano was due to perform in the UK, but the authorities would not allow his guide dog into the country unless it was in quarantine for six months. The stringent quarantine measures of those days were intended to prevent the spread of rabies.

After two more successful albums, Feliciano became a household name all over Latin America,  moved to Los Angeles. He recorded The Doors’ song “Light My Fire” in a Latin style and when released as a single, it reached #3 on the US pop charts in 1968 and sold over one million copies in the US market alone.  This song also got him Best New Artist of the Year and for Best Pop Song of the Year in 1969.   Another classic by Feliciano, Feliz Navidad was recorded 1970.  He has remained active, creative and involved
up to the present.

(Excerpt taken from


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