American, Leroy Gomez, was born in Cape Cod, Massachusetts and by the age of 14 had already formed his own band. After an uneventful childhood and his continued work with local
bands, having mastered vocals and a skill at the saxophone, he was lured on tour with Tavares. Touring with Tavares took him around the U.S., Canada and Europe. While in Europe he fell in
love with Paris and decided to make it his home.
In Paris he became one of the top session saxophone players and vocalist. He worked with many great artists, amongst them: Patrick Juvet, Gilbert Becaud, Claude Francois, Laurent
Voulzy and many more. His notoriety brought him to the attention of Elton John where he played saxophone on John’s hit album "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road."
His first solo success was the 1975 single "Here We Go Round" which was an instant hit in France. This led to a chance meeting with producer Nicolas Skorsky who was chomping at the bit
to cash in on the current disco craze. Skorsky brought Gomez together with studio musicians to form Santa Esmeralda. Their first album was a reworking of the Animals classic "Don't Let Me
Be Misunderstood." The album was an international success. It became a #-1 disco hit around the world, racking up 48 Gold albums and 42 Platinum albums worldwide. Before "Saturday Night
Fever" (The Bee Gees) and "Thriller" (Michael Jackson), Leroy Gomez had broken the world record of album sales with 15 million album's sold within a few short months. It even went to #-15
on Billboard's Top 40 on December 10th, 1977.
In an effort to recreate the success of the first album, producer Skorsky reunited Gomez with the same studio musicians. And once again a rock classic was resurrected and disco-tized.
The second album, 1978's "The House Of The Rising Sun," had the same full-length album track but not the same success. It did well in the clubs but didn't have the Pop appeal or
international fame of it's predecessor. But the Santa Esmeralda phenomenon continued throughout 1978 with the inclusion of "Sevilla Nights" on the soundtrack to "Thank God It's Friday." At
this point Gomez left to continue his solo career, having one release on Casablanca Records. The medley of "Gypsy Woman/Spanish Harlem" made it to the club top 40 briefly.
Skorsky shifted gears with the fourth Santa Esmeralda release. "Beauty" was unveiled in late 1978, and the exit of Gomez and the addition of Jimmy Goings went unnoticed. This album featured no rock remakes and was
more formulated. The album although well produced, and perhaps one of their best, got lost in the glutton of releases that year and produced no hits. Not to be counted out as of yet. The group made a stunning comeback
with 1979's "Another Cha-Cha." The title track went Top Ten in the clubs and renewed interest in the group. They followed it with 1980's "Don't Be Shy Tonight" which boasted another Top Ten club hit with "C'est
Magnifique" and as with the previous release Goings had written or co-written all the material.
Two albums would follow, "The Green Talisman" and "Hush" neither producing any reaction or hits. And as the disco-era faded, so too did Santa Esmeralda. During the initial Leroy Gomez period Santa Esmeralda won
six "Billboard Awards," were twice selected best live show in Europe by the "Federation of the European Press" and awarded the "Mask of Success."
In 2002, Gomez, who had been touring with a new incarnation of the group, released "Lay Down My Love," an album of new material, and in 2004 "Santa Esmeralda- The Greatest Hits," featuring newly recorded
versions of the band's disco-era hits, including those which had been sung by Goings. Gomez continues to be active in the recording world, mainly as a saxophone player. Having played on recent releases by Jose Manuel
and Jose Feliciano. He was the first foreign artist to be presented the "Gondola d Oro" of the Venice Music Festival. To see a tour schedule and learn more about Leroy Gomez and Santa Esmeralda visit their website.