Widely acknowledged as one of the greatest percussionists of all time, Giovanni Hidalgo, began playing percussion at the age of five. Born into a family of musicians, Giovanni first played on a set of congas handcrafted by his father, the great Jose "Maneñgue" Hidalgo. Giovanni first became in the early eighties when traveling to Cuba to work with the group Batacumbele whose debut album has become a cult favorite. Featuring his incredible hand-drumming technique, the album shot Giovanni to instant prominence. His incredible technique and style was the foundation of the hybrid musical style called Songo. He has worked with Eddie Palmieri, Dizzy Gillespie, Tito Puente, Mickey Hart, Freddy Hubbard, Paul Simon, Dave Valentin, Paquito d'Rivera, and Carlos Santana. His collaborative effort with pianist, Michel Camilo,”Hands of Rhythm” was nominated for a Grammy award in The Best Latin Jazz category. A number of innovative products bear Giovanni's name including the LP Galaxy Giovanni Congas, Bongos and Djembe, LP Giovanni Compact Conga, the vintage style LP Giovanni Palladium Congas as well as the LP Prestige Series Giovanni Timbales. The Giovanni Compact Conga won a 2003 Musikmesse press award (MIPA), receiving top votes in the percussion category by representatives of musical instrument magazines from around the globe.
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