MADRID – Singer Tito Mora, one of the first pop idols of Spanish youth in the 1960s, died Monday in Madrid after a long pulmonary illness. He was 72.
The remains of the man born Carlos Garcia Romero will receive “an intimate and final goodbye” from his family and friends, those closest to him told Efe in a communique.
Tito Mora released his last CD, “Vivo por Ti,” in 1996. The album was a hymn to life after the liver transplant he had in 1992, which allowed him to live another 21 years.
Born in Madrid on June 25, 1940, he was the son of baritone Jose Garcia Fernandez Olaria and soprano Ana Romero Campos, and was the brother of Ana Maria Olaria, an operatic figure, and of Amparo de Lerma, dedicated to musical reviews and Spain’s light opera, the zarzuela.
In the late 1950s he was a member of Los Brujos, one of Spain’s first pop music groups, which he left in the early ‘60s to record his first solo disc with RCA.
The Spanish singer earned his first Gold Record in 1964, while his second Gold Record came 10 years later with an album recorded in English and Spanish, and which, among other numbers, contained the song “El Triste.”
In 1967 he accepted dancer Jose Toledano’s offer to accompany him on a tour of the United States.
That leap across the Atlantic ended with his moving to New York, where he settled, was twice married, and where his daughter Katherine Anne Romero-Mushinsky was born.
He was a regular on the television shows of Johnny Carson, Ed Sullivan, Merv Griffin and Joey Bishop.