Nat King Cole (1956–58)
The crooner and jazz pianist was a frequent visitor to Cuba in the Fifties, performing at Havana's famed Tropicana club three times before the Communist takeover at the end of the decade. Unlike Josephine Baker, he felt the city afforded him the respect denied to him in the States. "I love going to Cuba, because they treat me like a white man," he noted at the time.
Intoxicated by Cuba's exotic sounds and rhythms, Cole used a Havana studio to record instrumental tracks for what would become Cole Español (1958), an album composed largely of Cuban songs — including his repertoire staple "Quizás, Quizás, Quizás." It was the first of three Latin-influenced discs he would release.