The Cuban musician Israel ‘Cachao’ Lopez has a special relationship with his bass. He calls his instrument, which he plays with unparalleled expressiveness, his ‘wooden wife’. Cachao, born into a family of a long and renowned tradition of bassists, has been one of the creators of son and mambo. Together with his brother, the cellist and violinist Prestes Lopez, he played in popular bands, such as the charanga orchestra Arcano y sus Maravillas of flautist Antonio Arcano, which was very popular in Cuba between 1937 and 1958. They experimented a lot together and made some hard to swallow changes in the danzon. This modernization eventually led to the mambo that we are all familiar with now. Subsequently Cachao made a name for himself as the leader of many Latin jam sessions (descargas) and various Latin ensembles.