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Beyond Salsa Piano - Instructional Series

NYC Bulletin

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Monday, 09 January 2017, 10:10 PM

Gerardo Contino Rings in the New Year with Cuba Caliente

Wednesdays at Gonzalez y Gonzalez

As the holiday season has given way to the New Year, the Cuban music scene of Gotham forges ahead into 2017. The past year has been a fruitful one for NYC, with acts such as Maykel Blanco and Los Van Van making appearances in and around the metro area. However, with the blank slate of the coming year looming overhead, the effects of what 2017 will have to offer has yet to be determined.

Always in search of new endeavors to explore, New York’s very own Gerardo Contino breaks into 2017 with a revamped version of Cuba Caliente, held at Gonzalez y Gonzalez on Mercer Street in Greenwich Village. Contino hosted the event for the summer months of 2016 before embarking on a six-week residency in Doha, Qatar. Upon returning to NY, Los Habaneros in tow, he has once again set his sights on being at the helm of promoting Cuban culture in the Big Apple.

Noticing a need to draw a wider and more diverse audience into the fold, Contino decided to revisit the idea of Cuban Caliente from a new and different angle. Originally billed as a community-networking event for Cubans in New York City, Contino now aims to use the event to appeal to a new public market instead of only promoting to the Cuban community and Cuban dance enthusiasts. Through a regular rotation of original local acts as well as promoting a “more inclusive vibe” in comparison the many dance socials already existing in NYC, he intends to present Cuban music to a far more expansive crowd.

Taking this concept into the musical realm, 2017 sees Contino’s music taking on a new from as well. In the years following his 2013 release of the hard-hitting Cuban Salsa tour de force “Somos Latinos”, Gerardo has issued several singles that have fused Cuban music with everything from Brazilain Samba to Colombian Vallanato. His new original single “Año Nuevo” is an anthemic depiction of the very idea that Cuba Caliente aims to represent, a fusion of pop and world music with an unimistakable Cuban core for anyone with an open mind. The video, shot at the last Cuba Caliente just before the New Year, can be viewed below.

Scheduled to occur most Wednesdays, Cuba Caliente will be held this month Los Habaneros on January 18 and 25 at Gonzalez y Gonzalez located at 192 Mercer St, New York, NY 10012. Doors will open at 9pm, music starts at 10pm and the party ends at 1am. Cover at the door is $10. More information on calendar dates and rotation of bands can be found at Cuba Caliente and Gonzalez y Gonzalez’s respective websites.

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Thursday, 15 October 2015, 02:20 PM

Salsondria, Fuakata & La Tematik at SOB's Oct 16

What happens when one of New York’s premier Cuban dance events teams up with one of NY’s premier Timba Bands along with one of NY’s premier dance schools at one of NY’s premier world music venues? Salsondria, Fuakáta and La Tematik will come together for a special evening at SOB’s (Sounds of Brazil) on Friday October 16 to answer that very question.

Salsondria, featured in earlier blogs, has been growing and evolving steadily since first catching timba.com’s attention in late 2014. Host and founder Daniel Odría has been working tirelessly to bring together the Cuban dance community and the musicians who play Cuban music live, with much success in doing so along the way. From his steady Tuesday residency at Favela Cubana to his guerilla-style parties at various locations across the metro area, Odría has averaged around 8-10 Saslondria events per month this past summer.

La Tematik are of course no strangers to the Sounds of Brazil stage. The group still stands as one of the few large Cuban Music ensembles performing regularly throughout the NYC area. They’ve established themselves, among other things, as the go-to orchestra to back up artists such as Mayito Rivera and Jose “Pepito” Gomez during their seasonal performances and have made many appearances on media sources such as ©Congahead. Under the direction of pianist Sebastian Natal and Jhair Sala, the band features a revolving door of some of the best singers and instrumentalists the city has to offer.

The itinerary for the night will commence with and intro to Cuban dance lesson by Fuákata at 7:00pm, followed by the band's 1st set at 8:00pm, a 9:00pm DJ set and finally the band's 2nd set at 10:00pm.

Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at Door

For ages 21 and over.

SOB’s is located at 204 Varick St, New York, NY 10014. 

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Tuesday, 07 April 2015, 06:24 PM

Salsondria Tuesdays at Favela Cubana

Every Tuesday in April

Attention New Yorkers! Salsondria's Tuesday residency at Favela Cubana continues into the month of April. As always, the events showcase some of the best talent in Gotham's Cuban Music scene. Enrique Lopez and Nu D'Lux are among the list of prime artists that will be featured on the Salsondria roster this month. Favela Cubana is located at 543 LaGuardia Place in Manhattan. The party starts at 10pm with a $5 dollar cover.

For those who cannot make it out on Tuesdays, the party continues every Saturdays at Favela's sister restaurant Calle Dao, located in Midtown at 38 W 39th Street and also starts at 10pm ($10 cover). Few events in New York present live Cuban Music with this kind of regularity and accessibility in such an intimate yet high-energy context. A unique, "up close and personal" listening and dancing experience worthy of any Cuban Music lover's attention. Come show your support!

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Saturday, 17 January 2015, 03:14 PM

Gerardo Contino y Los Habaneros

Debut new single at Subrosa Jan 20th

Subrosa, Blue Note’s new Cuban-themed club located in the heart of the Meat Packing District, has wasted no time in establishing itself as one of Manhattan’s central clubs for Latin music since opening its doors in November of 2014. The club has served as the new headquarters for the Pedrito Martínez Group as well as regular appearances by Pepito Gómez, Ariance Trujillo and other members of New York’s Cuban Music Community.

While the core motive of this establishment has been to feature NYC Cuban artists, Subrosa has been wise to include representatives of other genres as well. Groups ranging from Rana Santacruz’s original Mexican folk, the Colombian Jazz sounds of Pablo Mayor and even the indie rock meets salsa-dura fusion of the Williamsburg Salsa Orchestra are among the recent and upcoming attractions on Subrosa’s calendar.

An upcoming event of particular note is by none other than Gerardo Contino y Los Habaneros. Mr. Contino will be debuting his most recently recorded song “Quisiera Saber” this coming Tuesday Jan 20th at Subrosa. In many ways, the venue is the perfect fit for Contino, his music and his new single. A true believer in the power of cultural diffusion, Contino has often looked to influences outside of his home country in terms of his original compositions and even the members of his own band. His first recording as a leader “Somos Latinos”, while at its core being a Cuban Salsa record, incorporates strong influences from other Latin genres including Cumbia. Ina addition, Contino has collaborated with a wide range of musicians including Peruvian Folkoric Group Kambalache Negro. “Quisiera Saber” is no exception, written in the style of Colombian Vallenato mixed with a healthy dose of pop and Contino’s undeniably Cuban voice.

Contino’s sets will start at 7pm and 9pm and tickets can be bought online via Subrosa’s website. Of course more information on other concerts and events by Contino and his band can be found on his website and Facebook page. Subrosa is located at 63 Gansevoort Street in Manhattan. 63 Gansevoort Street

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