Little Johnny Rivero
Little Johnny Rivero legendary congero, percussionist, producer, song writer and band leader was born in New York City to Puerto Rican parents. As a young boy, Little Johnny was drawn to the sounds and rhythms of the “rumberos” playing at Jefferson and Randall's Island parks. Little Johnny began practicing percussion at age ten and played in his school’s band. Soon after, he took dance lessons which eventually led to performances on stage with the bands of the era at such famous venues as The Manhattan Center, The Colgate Gardens, The Copacabana and The Palladium.
At age fourteen, Little Johnny joined Orquesta Colón, the youngest Latin band in New York City and recorded two albums with them. Johnny then moved to Puerto Rico with his parents and joined La Sonora Ponceña. After playing bongos with the band for a year and a half he switched to congas, which rekindled the love affair he had begun with this instrument as a small child. Over the sixteen years Little Johnny played with La Sonora Ponceña he recorded eighteen highly respected albums with them.
Currently, Little Johnny is touring the world extensively with the winner of ten Grammy awards, Eddie Palmieri. In addition, Johnny continues to work at studio sessions and perform with many of the biggest and most respected acts in latin music including his own band.
Johnny's first solo effort, “Pasos Gigantes” has been very well received by critics and music fans alike. Johnny also wrote 12 songs and produced this CD, showcasing his compositions and playing abilities. Johnny’s second solo album, ‘Music In Me”in the latin Jazz field was also well received in 2016. The Fundacion Nacional Para La Cultura Popular de Puerto Rico recognized it as one of the best album of the year.
At the moment, Little Johnny is working on his new CD entitled “Golpe Duro” under Uprising Music, Truth Revolution Records and distributed by the Ropeadope label. It will take you on an artistic journey of musically intriguing sounds and performances.
Little Johnny's credits include work with Eddie Palmieri, Charlie Palmieri, Rubén Blades, Cheo Feliciano, Andy Montañez, Ismael Miranda, Ismael Quintana, Adalberto Santiago, Justo Betancourt, Bobby Valentin, Celia Cruz, Giovanni Hidalgo, Ray Barretto, Patato Valdes, Changito, Tata Guines, John Santos, Frankie Ruiz, Sergio George, Descarga Boricua All Stars, RMM All Stars, Batacumbele, Alfredo De La Fe, Victor Manuelle and Domingo Quiñones.
In the Latin Jazz field: Brian Lynch, Conrad Herwig, Dave Valentin, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Ray Appleton “Killer”, Harry Allen, Linda Ciofalo,Tim Ries (Rolling Stones) Donald Harrison, Phil Woods, David Sánchez, Miguel Zenon, Monty Alexander, Joe Locke, Kenny G, Bebo Valdes, Paquito D’ Rivera, David Murray, Kathy Watson, and many other artists. Little Johnny has collaborated musically with three Grammy Winners and endorses LP instruments.