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Panamanian musician Víctor Nicolás Paz Solanilla was artistically known as "The Trumpet of the Americas". PHOTOGRAPHY: Infobae
Panamanian musician Víctor Nicolás Paz Solanilla was artistically known as "The Trumpet of the Americas." Photo: Infobae 

Vitín Paz passes away: Farewell to the Panamanian who became the Trumpet of the Americas

Panamanian musician Víctor Nicolás Paz has died at the age of 89 of unknown causes, leaving behind a rich legacy of jazz, mambo and salsa.

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Víctor Nicolás Paz, better known as Vítin Paz or "Trumpet of the Americas," died on April 3 in his native country for unknown reasons, according to local media reports.

His career includes countless collaborations with Frank Sinatra, The Jackson Five, Stevie Winder, Diana Ross, Ray Charles, Tony Bennet and countless other Latin stars such as Pedro Vargas, Celia Cruz, Ismael Rivera, Tito Rodríguez, Lucho Gatica and Julio Iglesias.

The list is immense and goes through rock, jazz, mambo, salsa, Latin jazz or Latin folklore, showing that the nickname of the "Trumpet of the Americas" was earned with decades of work.

Institutional reactions and those of his followers have replicated the mourning these days for the passing of a musical legend whose death has just marked the end of an era or artistic school that is already fading away or, rather, dissolving physically to persevere analogically among records and vinyls.

Panama's Minister of Culture, Carlos Aguilar, said that "once again the cultural sector is in mourning. Maestro Vitín Paz has departed, leaving us all his musical legacy. Our condolences to his family, friends and the country".

Singer Idania Dowman, with whom he shared the stage with the Big Band, emphasized their memories together and the change of relays: "The young people who were able to learn and live with him had an honor and I hope they were able to value and weigh all the wisdom and knowledge he shared. He was very strict because he was old school, but he always encouraged education and the youth to learn and innovate".

Something they don't teach in schools

Victor Nicolas was born in Panama in August 1932 in a family of musicians. His father was also a trumpet player and director of the Music Band of the Panama Fire Department. His mother was a teacher who taught him solfege.

From an early age, both he and his brother grew up surrounded by music, spurred on by a father who decided to turn little Victor into an advanced student: "I have verified this over the years. What he taught me is something they don't teach in schools. I always remember his first and last lesson and I have many things stored in my head that I haven't even used yet".

At 19, he began to travel abroad and began his musical journey through many countries and continents, which also earned him his nickname. After more than six decades of career, in recent years he presented the romantic album La Trompeta de America in 2003 with completely Panamanian songs and the following year a second part with 12 more songs.

He also contributed to the recovery on DVD of the historic 1973 recording at La Fania and was honored for his entire career by the government of his country in 2016, having become an immortal trumpet player for America.

In heaven they already have the ideal trumpet player for an eternal jam.

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