Johnny Pacheco, an idol in world of salsa, dies at age 85
(AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee, File)NEW YORK – Salsa idol Johnny Pacheco, who was a co-founder of Fania Records, Eddie Palmieri’s bandmate and backer of music stars such as Rubén Bladés, Willie Colón and Celia Cruz, died Monday. He had been hospitalized in New York a few days earlier for pneumonia, his wife, Maria Elena “Cuqui” Pacheco, said on the artist’s Facebook account. Fania Records tweeted that the musician was “the man most responsible for the genre of salsa music. He received the Latin Recording Academy Music Excellence Award in 2005 and was nominated for multiple Grammys and Latin Grammys. ___Associated Press writer Sigal Ratner-Arias reported this story in New York and AP writer Berenice Bautista reported from Mexico City.