Xavier Cugat (January 1, 1900 - October 27, 1990) was a Spanish-Cuban bandleader whom many consider to have had more to do with the infusion of Latin music into United States popular music than any other musician. Perez Prado followed in Cugat's footsteps.
Cugat was born Francisco de Asis Javier Cugat Mingall de Bru y Deulofeo in Girona, Spain. With his family, he immigrated to Cuba when he was five. He trained as a classical violinist and played with the Orchestra of the Teatro Nacional in Havana.