In the 1980s Miguel Sague Jr. and some of his friends and family began playing Cuban music at parties, in Pittsburgh. Miguel Sague Jr. played the guitar and sang lead. His wife, Lenia Sague and his young son Miguel “Cha” Sague III sang backup. Friends from Pittsburgh and from Latin America often joined in creating an impromptu band that thrilled the rest of the guests more and more at each party. One day, a Central American friend named Jose made the comment that the group should play publicly at a local college festival called the Latin American Folk Festival. In 1985 the Pittsburgh Latin group comprised of family and friends took the stage at the festival under the name “Los Guaracheros Del Canei”. The music was mostly Cuban and Latin folk at that time. The charismatic, familiar party energy of the fledgling band got the people dancing. The following year, the band performed at the festival again. This time under the much shorter name, “Guaracha”. This time they were even more well received and the owner of small a night club pulled Miguel Jr. aside afterwards, to inquire about the bands interest in playing professionally.
The band played venues of all kinds throughout the 80s and in the early 90s. The band evolved into a Latin, top 40 group, gaining professional musicians from Pittsburgh and playing at the hot new night clubs and festivals of Pittsburgh. They were often seen performing for Liberal causes as well. The group now performed Salsa, Meringue, Cumbia and Bolero, Rumba and other styles of Latin and Caribbean music, including originals by Miguel Jr. They had opened for Tito Puente in Pittsburgh and in the late 90s, Guaracha even performed a tour with the famous and venerated Lazaro Ros.
Around the year 1999, Miguel Jr. left off leading the band so that he could pursue teaching in public schools. Guaracha disappeared, seemingly forever. Then in 2004 Miguel’s son moved back to Pittsburgh and, seeing that his father’s band was no longer in existence, he took on the full responsibility of restoring the Cuban Dance band in Pittsburgh. He had watched his father do this work throughout his childhood and he knew exactly how he would go about his new task. He updated info, modified the set list, contacted venues, trained a whole new crop of Guaracha musicians, and within a year, a young, new version of Guaracha was playing the new festivals and clubs throughout the Steel City. This time the group would play new originals by Miguel III, and put a new spin on the arrangements of the Latin classics and some of the more current hits. He searched for up and coming venues and performed many paid shows as well as charity shows for the Pittsburgh Food Bank and many Liberal and Progressive projects. Miguel III soon was booking shows on Caribbean cruises and performing on live national TV, at Steeler’s Games as well as moving crowds at the City’s coffee houses and clubs. Some people still remembered the good old days of the original Guaracha, and now, a large and growing majority of the crowd see the band as something fresh and new. Miguel III and his new Guaracha serve both groups. Guaracha is the Cuban-run, Latin Phenomenon that mixes tradition with innovation to bring hot, original Salsa, Merengue, Cumbia, Rreggeton and other Tropical dance music to the vibrant growing community of Pittsburgh.