Singapore Music Icon Rufino Soliano, 1932 – 2017

Published on 25 April 2017

Credit: Singapore Memory Project

Musician, composer, arranger and conductor Rufino Soliano died on Saturday, 22 April 2017 at the age of 85.

Soliano grew up in a family of musicians and was active in the local music scene as a violinist, drummer and percussionist since his early teens.

He is best known for his role as head of the former SBC (Singapore Broadcasting Corporation) Orchestra and played an important role in the music heard on local shows from the 1960s to the early 1990s. He also played with international music stars such as Louis Armstrong, Shirley Bassey and Sammy Davis Jr.

In 2013, at the age of 81, he released his debut album of original Latin compositions titled Endlessly.

“He was a consummate and brilliant musician, trailblazer and a true gentleman…A light has gone out in the Singapore music scene,” wrote jazz veteran Jeremy Monteiro wrote in a Facebook tribute post to Soliano.

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