When was Desi Arnaz a refugee of Fidel Castro?

Desi Arnaz was not a refugee of Fidel Castro.

The Cuban-born musician and actor (1917-1986) came to the United States in the 1930s, fleeing Batista, not Castro.

Arnaz married comedienne Lucille Ball and starred with her in the hit TV comedy “I Love Lucy” (1951-1957). Playing a bandleader in the show, Arnaz introduced millions of Americans to Afro-Cuban music, with its bongo drums and maracas.

He also made it more possible for Americans to imagine a successful, middle-class person who happened to be Hispanic.

The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love, a 1989 novel by Cuban American Oscar Hijuelos (1951- ), tells the story of two Cuban brothers who play music in New York City clubs.

The novel won a Pulitzer Prize and was made into a movie, The Mambo Kings (1992).

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist. Born in New York, her work has appeared in the Examiner, Yahoo News, Buzzfeed, among others.

Leave a Comment