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Beyond Salsa Piano - Instructional Series


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Monday, 18 January 2010, 05:37 PM

Lily y Su Sonora Clásica

Concert Début in Stockholm

Lily y Su Sonora Clásica gave their début concert 18 January at Mosebacke in Stockholm. Lily Hernández is fast becoming one of the most sought-after lead singers in Europe, having performed with a variety of bands throughout Europe and in the United States. She is a versatile singer who is at home singing jazz, timba, salsa or son. For examples of her work you can see La Recompensa, Latin Train, Didara Band, La Liga Habanera, Richard Ortega y La Jugada, Latin Jazz Ensemble (USA 2006), and El Mena y Su Eyeife Band (Italy).

But now Lily has taken a step out on her own forming her own group, Lily y Su Sonora Clásica. Having her own orchestra allows Lily to express her passion for son but with a modern take or as she puts it: "traditional son with the energy of timba". The band is a septeto with an impressive list of musicians: Lily Hernández, Calixto Oviedo, Pepe Espinosa, Oldrich Gonzalez, Ramon Rodriguez, Oslen Ceballo, and with Yarién Oviedo and Whitney Hernández on vocals. You can check out a fan video from the first performance below.

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Sunday, 17 January 2010, 11:13 AM

Pepítin con El Trabuco

Está Pegando Bien

Pepitín with Salsa Mayor in FranceThe one constant on the Havana music scene is change. José Antonio "Pepitín" Rodríguez has recently joined Manolito y Su Trabuco replacing his ex-bandmate from Salsa Mayor, El Noro, who recently left the Trabuco for Pupy y Los Que Son Son. Pepitín makes a good addition to the Trabuco, which is known for being one of the timba bands that keeps closely to son. Since the departure of El Indio, the band hasn't really had a sonero style singer. The addition of Pepitín restores the original balance of voices: sonero (Pepitín), R&B (Amaray) and rap (Lázaro)

Maykel Blanco "discovered" Pepitín singing traditional son in a bar in Old Havana. Pepitín has also performed on Cuban television with Jóvenes Clásicos del Son, and in our last Pepitín update, we reported that he has been working on some demos of traditional music. Word from Havana is that the audience is happy with Pepitín's addition to the band. I am looking forward to seeing him on the Trabuco's next European tour!

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Saturday, 16 January 2010, 04:17 PM

José Torres y Salsa Tropical Add Juanky to Roster

Juan Carlos Hechavarría Ex-Klímax Now in Poland

New Video and Demos

Juan Carlos HechavarriaJosé Torres y Salsa Tropical have scored a major coup. They have added ex-Klímax singer Juan Carlos "Juanky" Hechavarría to their line-up. Juanky is one of few young singers today with the ability to sing like a true sonero. He's also in touch with the youth culture as witnessed by the recent Klímax repertoire. His addtion brings a shot of fresh Havana energy to this already established band.

Since their formation in April 2000, Salsa Tropical, based in Wroclow, has built-up their name in Europe having performed at congresos in Germany and Poland  as well as on many Polish television programs. In addition bandleader José Torres is commited to Cuban music and  organized Poland's first salsa congress, which has now become the annual Torres Salsa Carnival. He has brought artists such as Manolito y Su Trabuco and Maykel Blanco y Salsa Mayor to Polish fans.

José Torres y Salsa TropicalJosé comes from a musical family. His cousin Alina Torres is well-known as a composer of hits for groups such as  La Charanga Habanera, Los Van Van and Pupy y Los Que Son Son. His son is the band's drummer and recently Salsa Tropical has expanded it's repertoire with new songs written by yet another Torres, 18-year old Fernando Torres of La Habana. The catchy and danceable tunes "Dándole la vuelta al mundo" and "Tiki Tiki" were both written by this talented young composer who happens to be José's nephew.

José Torres y Salsa Tropical are in the process of recording their new material. The instruments are finished and now the vocal tracks, mix and master remain. But you don't have to wait, you can already listen to a good live recording of "Dándole la vuelta al mundo" with Juanky on radio. And below is a video of the live performace. Stay tuned because we will soon be adding "Tiki Tiki" to the radio as well. Click on the link below that says "Continue reading" for a video of "Dándole la vuelta" al mundo and the list of bandmembers.

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Friday, 15 January 2010, 12:11 PM


Gerardito to debut with NYC timba band on Jan 23

New Afro-Cuban Workshops with Bobi Cespedes

La Bolá with new singer GerarditoOur friend, conguero and La Bolá leader Aryam Vazquez reports that the group has recruited "Gerardito", an ex-NG La Banda vocalist. The new singer will debut with the band on Saturday, January 23 at DROM -85 Ave. A (between 5th and 6th streets) in New York City. Doors open at 7pm, show starts at 8pm. Tickets are $12 in advance and $15 at the door.

La Bolá is gaining force world-wide after their debut release SIN COMENTARIOS, which has been picked up for radio airplay in Paris, France.

Schooled in the top Havana conservatories and music schools in the US, La Bolá encompasses some of the most in demand and successful musicians in NYC, all whom enjoying thriving careers in Latin music performing, touring and recording with such artists as Celia Cruz, Marc Anthony, Miles Peña, Michael Stuart, Alfredo de la Fe and many more. 


Bobi CespedesChékere Making & Playing

with Bobi Céspedes
Join us: January 9th, 16th, 23rd, and February 20th
From 1pm to 3pm
(Chekeré Playing starts April 3rd)
For registration and location of classes information please call 510-290-8551 - Oakland, California

Registrations open January 4th 2010.
1. Chekeré Making starts January 9th, 1 to 3pm
2. Orisha Song Class starts January 10th 1 to 3pm
3. El Igbodu February 22nd through 26th  7to 9pm
4. Chekeré Playing starts April 3rd

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