|Charo in 2013|
68 years ago in Murcia Spain -- that's the official story but there is dispute about the year of her birth -- María del Rosario Mercedes Pilar Martínez Molina Baeza was born, But that name was way too long for Las Vegas billboards or Tonight Show credits, so the singer/dancer/comedian/flamenco guitarists became known simply as Charo.
If you watched more than five minutes of television in the '70s you couldn't have missed her. She was a frequent guest on Johnny Carson's show, though she first got national TV exposure on the Ed Sullivan Show in the '60s singing with her then-husband Xavier Cugat's band.
Despite her many talents, Charo in her heyday probably was known best for her sex appeal. She was quoted in Billboard saying, "Around the world I am known as a great musician. But in America I am known as the cuchi-cuchi girl. That’s okay because cuchi-cuchi has taken me all the way to the bank."
Here are some videos of Charo at work. Have a cuchi cuchi birthday, Charo!
Let's start with Charo on a Dean Martin special with Dino and Danny Thomas.
Here's Charo with Cher-o
But yes, she did have real musical talent having reportedly studied flamenco guitar at a school for unprivileged children founded by Andre Segovia. She shows her stuff on this 1977 video:
Cuchi cuchi forever!
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