Armando Manzanero, the legendary Mexican singer-songwriter who marked entire generations with songs like “I adore”, “We are boyfriends” and “I don’t know about you”. COVID-19 has put him to bed in recent weeks and ended his life, but not his legacy.
With more than 400 musical themes recorded throughout his life, the recognition of his artistic career with a Latin Billboard and the opening of his museum in Mérida, Yucatán, and many projects still on the horizon, the singer-songwriter Armando Manzanero reached the age of 86 feeling in the best moment and considered that in 2020 it was “Awarded for life”.
The musician confessed that for 15 years he left modesty behind, and it is not for less, the Yucatecan is aware of the legacy he has not only in Mexico, but also internationally since more than 50 of his songs have been sung in different parts of the world.
Even in full confinement by COVID-19 he always remained active, either at the head of the Society of Authors and Composers of Mexico (SACM) or doing what he does best, because according to what he told Efe a few months ago: “Every time I get better songs despite my age”.
The truth is that the talent that he boasted without embarrassment in recent years was forged from the cradle. He was born into a family of musicians on December 7, 1935 and it was his father, one of the founding musicians of the Typica Yucalpetén orchestra, who led him until he entered the School of Fine Arts in Mérida at age 8.
Although music was immersed in Armando Manzanero’s life since then, it was in 1957 when his career formally began in Mérida, Yucatán, where he worked as a pianist; some time later he moved to Mexico City and in which became one of the most requested companions of the 60s by renowned interpreters such as Lucho Gatica, Pedro Vargas, Carmela and Rafael, Luis Demetrio, Daniel Riolobos and José José, among others.
During this same time he won several recognitions for his work such as the Festival de la Canción in Mexico or the Festival de la Canción in Miami, which prompted him in 1967 to record his first album entitled My first recording.
This initial album was just the beginning of a long artistic career that was recognized this year by awarding him a Latin Billboard and the opening of his Casa Manzanero museum in Mérida, Yucatán. “I am immensely satisfied, very flattered, especially for the age I have and I think I am going to have a great time, because I am going to look for it and I will not wait for it to be brought to me”, commented to Infobae Mexico before receiving recognition for your Artistic career.
His commitment and love for his profession, started more than 60 years ago, led him not to stop despite the pandemic: “I spend my time working as if nothing happened.”
The singer-songwriter recently recorded a collaboration, began to make an unreleased album with the intention of “leaving everything in order” and refused to organize a show broadcast through a digital platform because he had a bad experience that left him very disappointed because “it was It’s horrible to sing to cameras, to lights … streaming is colder than dancing with your sister ”.
He also worked as a musical producer for great figures such as Luis Miguel, Carlos Cuevas or Angélica María, and despite his extensive career he never stopped trying to help young generations, as he met Sebastián Yatra a few months ago.
Although Armando Manzanero and his family reinforced security measures to avoid a contagion of COVID-19, the singer became ill after opening his museum in Mérida, Yacatán, and his health deteriorated in a matter of days and he was always considered a patient of risk because of his age and the diabetes he had for several years.
Following the protocol, the singer-songwriter took refuge in his house where he was given all the necessary care, such as his own oxygen concentrator; It was last Thursday when he decided to move to a hospital due to the lack of oxygen to his body. No other member of his family is infected, so it is not explained where he contracted the virus.
One of the musician’s daughters, María Elena Manzanero, stood out in an interview with Come the joy: “It was sudden since we found out that he has COVID and he was very well, he was oxygenated very well, he was perfect and suddenly his oxygenation began to drop and oxygen was brought home, but suddenly it was not enough for optimal oxygenation and we had to come to the hospital, where he is very well cared for and isolated ”.
“The care at home was no longer enough … I felt that I could not breathe and we were guided by the oximeter. He arrived on foot, went down the stairs of the house and we came in the family car ”, added in an interview with Windowing.
He was intubated as a measure to relax his lungs and his own behavior, since the teacher was always restless inside the hospital and his body was exhausted.
His wife Laura Elena Villa specified on more than one occasion that his state of health was stable: “That says that he became a little calm and the artificial oxygenation has decreased so that he could breathe better through his lungs and that is progress.”
He has never lost heart and even made a special request to his last wife before Christmas. “He told me ‘get very pretty, go see your mother and come over on the 24th as it should be …’ ‘My pretty girl, forgive me for the fights over salt, you were right’, is that I fight a lot because she eats a lot of salt ”, he revealed to Windowing
A few hours earlier, the family had expressed that Manzanero had presented an improvement and would be extubated. But around 03:00 in the morning, a cardiac arrest occurred that extinguished his flame, but ignited his legend.
Armando Manzanero died at the age of 85