Egidio Cuadrado: an accordion full of Grammy

Behind the great artistic conquests that Vallenato music contains there are stories full of joy and others of sadness, which are almost obligatory steps for the construction of the various faces that have glory and failure. That of this character is no less so, because her life has devoted her to playing the accordion for more than six decades, an activity that invites us to join hands and give praise because every day she reaps the great fruits of her artistic persistence.

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It is so true that the Latin Recording Academy, the entity that organizes the Grammy award, decided to recognize his cultural work through its council, which determined to deliver the Grammy for artistic excellence to Egidio Cuadrado Hinojosa on November 17, during a ceremony that will take place at the Four Seasons hotel in Las Vegas.

All her artistic conquests lead us to look back to February 26, 1953, when Cristina Hinojosa’s life was in danger and she was rushed to the hospital in Villanueva, in the town of La Guajira. There she was cared for by doctors Martínez and Fuscaldo, who, upon examining her, determined that the extreme degree of typhus she suffered was putting her life and her baby, which lasted almost seven months, at risk. The specialists were in the dilemma of saving her and not the baby. There were few minutes they had to decide. In the end, they risked saving both of them. The fragility of the newborn and the treatment to which it was subjected made the mother and the child a single life.

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When Egidio Cuadrado was six years old, every time his brother Hugues went to the mountains, he ran to the place where he kept his two-row accordion. I would take it down from where it was hanging and start talking to it. While he listened to the radio that played vallenato music, he took cover in the style of a minstrel and began his usual sing-song. Thus he learned to repeat the melodies until he was tired of The mucura, Ripe pineapple and That’s how I am.

His first group was organized when he was twelve years old, alongside Carlos Rivera and his brothers Carlos, José and Hugues, who played the maracas and the snare drum, replacing the guacharaca and the box. That was where he understood that his destiny was linked to the call of the accordion sounds.

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In the 70s, his house became a musical meeting point. People of all ages came there, seeking to be heard as songwriters and singers. Among them, a young man from Carrizal arrived, with whom he was united by family ties. It was Diomedes Díaz Maestre, with whom he began an endless journey of rehearsals, where the days gave way to the nights, as the only means to find the tuning, the perfect arrangements and the right song and thus assemble his musical project.

A year after her mother, Cristina Hinojosa, passed away in 1977, she decided to go to Bogotá in search of better horizons. He was the first accordion player to give Iván Villazón the opportunity to record, in 1979.

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In a party organized by Enrique Santos Calderón, director at that time of Time, Margarita Rosa de Francisco and Carlos Vives arrived, protagonists of the novel Gallito Ramirez. His brother Heber asked the actor to sing with them. With The singer of Fonseca and Absence, began what later became known as La Provincia, a project that revolutionized the Vallenato world inside and outside our territory. To the series Staggered He arrived at the suggestion of former president Alfonso López Michelsen, where, in addition to playing the music of the renowned author, he was a supporting actor.

After acting together in the series Staggered, from Caracol Televisión, under the direction of the director Sergio Cabrera in 1990, he recorded with Carlos Vives two musical productions from Vallenatas with Sony Music; Escalona: a song to life, in 1991, and then Step Volume 2.

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After the success achieved by the production and his popularity playing the composer Rafael Escalona, ​​Carlos Vives decided to create a group of Vallenato music with rock and pop fusions, giving life to the group La Provincia, of which the accordion of Egidio Cuadrado is fundamental. . Faced with the non-acceptance by the company for which they had made the two musical products, in 1994, they recorded the album Classics of La Provincia under the Sonolux label (Colombia) and Discos Philips-Polygram (International).

Egidio Cuadrado Hinojosa’s recording history began in 1977 and has not stopped, as well as his accolades. Currently, he recorded a musical product in which he sings alongside several renowned artists: Carlos Vives, Gusi, Jorge Celedón, with nine works of his own: The gift that God gave me, With you I live happy and The green ones and the ripe ones, as well as Hopeby Rafael Escalona; the spine, by Gustavo Gutiérrez, and I still love youby Daniel Celedón. For this record, Cuadrado had the production of Luis Ángel Pastor Pope and the entire cast of La Provincia.

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When he learned of the distinction that the Academy is going to grant him, Egidio Cuadrado stated, “This recognition that the Academy gives me and this gift that God gives me fills me with great satisfaction. It is a dream come true. The accordion is everything to me, I will always carry it in my heart wherever I go. I dedicate it to vallenata music, which is everything for me ”.

Regarding this Grammy for Excellence, Gabriel Abaroa Jr. expressed, “It is a great honor to recognize this remarkable group of legendary, yet very active artists with the Award for Musical Excellence and the Award of the Board of Directors of this year. His outstanding achievements have created a legacy in the world of Latin music that transcends generations and borders. “

* Writer, journalist, composer, music producer and cultural manager.

We would like to give thanks to the author of this article for this remarkable content

Egidio Cuadrado: an accordion full of Grammy