Santa Esmeralda Biography

A studio group performing in the disco-style of the late 70s, Santa Esmeralda made the US charts in 1977-78 with dance-orientated remakes of two songs originally popularized by the British group the Animals in the 60s. Santa Esmeralda featured vocalist Leroy Gomez (Cape Cod, Massachusetts, USA), a multi-instrumentalist who had played with Elton John, Tavares and others before taking the Santa Esmeralda position. The group recorded two of Gomez’s songs, a cover version of Van Morrison’s ‘Gloria’ and the Animals’ hit ‘Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood’. An album was built around those songs and itself reached number 25 on Casablanca Records in the US in late 1977, while ‘Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood’ made it to number 15. For the follow-up, the Animals’ ‘The House Of The Rising Sun’, Gomez was not involved, and the single peaked at number 78. No other singles charted, but a final album charted in late 1978 before the group’s name was retired.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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