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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Tony Croatto’s family says it has no control over use of composer’s song in NPP ad

By The Star Staff

“Yo Habito Una Tierra Luz,” a song written and recorded in 1979 by the late composer Tony Croatto, has become the target of controversy for the Croatto family because the administration of Gov. Pedro Pierluisi Urrutia features it in a government advertising campaign.

Tony Croatto was an Italian-born singer and composer best known for his Spanish folkloric songs from Puerto Rico. He died of cancer in 2005.

Croatto’s son Hermes Croatto posted a statement on social media Wednesday night expressing his disagreement with the use of the song “Yo Habito Una Tierra Luz” (I Inhabit a Land of Light) in a seasonal ad aired by the island government. He said the family was not asked about the use of the song.

“For those who have asked us about the use of the song “I Inhabit a Land of Light” in the government’s Christmas announcement, we want to let you know that we were not aware of the use of the song for this,” the statement said. “Unfortunately, and for reasons we will not go into now, the family has no control over this song, nor did they authorize its use for the advertisement. Like everyone else, we did not find out until the commercial came out.”

Hermes Croatto emphasized that the government should not be blamed for the situation.

“We assume that they made an approach to use the song and the person who manages it said yes regardless of our father’s feelings of always staying out of political issues,” read the social media post that was signed by Alejandro, Mara and Hermes Croatto.

The song was also used in an advertising campaign called “La Isla Estrella” by the Tourism Company under the administration of former Gov. Alejandro García Padilla.

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