The Telegraph | 5/15/2009 12:00:00 AM
May 15 -- Rafael Escalona, who died on May 13 aged 81, was a prolific composer of classic songs in the tradition of vallenato, the popular folk music of Colombia; his work was immortalised in the novel One Hundred Years of Solitude, by his long-standing friend, the Nobel Prize winning author Gabriel García Márquez, who declared that the book was just a 350-page vallenato.
In 1991 the composer's life and work inspired a Colombian television soap opera that launched the singer Carlos Vives. Vives later recorded Escalona's music with a rock and pop twist, and many other artists followed suit.
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