During his captivity in a Danish POW camp, he met a guitarist named Ladi Geisler, with whom he soon formed a small combo. After the war, he led various combos (which usually included Geisler)in The Salambo Night Club from René Durand & The Tarantella Night Club near the famous Reeperbahn. Horst also played with British Service musicians and Big Bands like Edmundo Ros. Settling in Hamburg, he became part of the burgeoning music scene in the port city.
Signed to the Polydor label in the 1950s, he made accordion and dance band music under his own name. He also began to make Latin music recordings under the pseudonym of Roberto Delgado & Mister Pepper. The Delgado albums became popular in Europe, and then found an audience in the UK and North America as Polydor opened up several international subsidiaries. Polydor already had two top pop orchestra stars in Bert Kaempfert and James Last, and many of their fans began to buy Delgado records as well.
It’s interesting to note that Wende recorded his albums using the same group of studio musicians who recorded for Kaempfert and Last; in fact, guitarist Ladi Geisler also provided the distinct bass guitar backbone to the Kaempfert sound. The Delgado recordings were initially Latin-oriented, but they eventually covered a number of different musical genres including African, Italian, Russian, Greek and Jamaican music as well as Broadway musicals and current pop hits. It could be argued that Wende/Delgado helped to pioneer world music. He managed to break into the German singles market with his version of “Mexico” in 1962. He also arranged music for other German artists such as German folk/pop singer Knut Kiesewetter. Like most of his pop orchestral contemporaries, Wende’s popularity had faded by the 1980s, and he gradually retired from playing music professionally.
In recent years, his music has become popular again, and some of his recordings have been reissued on CD. Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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