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LA TIMBA LA TRAIGO YO - Nuevo Disco + Gira Europa de Robert Armas y los Conquistadores de la Salsa

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Friday, 05 February 2010, 09:45 AM


Flash Update on New Revé CD

Elito Revé in FranceMore information is coming in on the new CD that Orquesta Revé has just finished recording, which I reported on ealier today. The album will be named
Fans will immediately recognize this as one of Elito's battle cries. If you are new to Cuban music I would encourage you to sift through all the information in our Orquesta Revé section. Elio Revé y Su Charangón has been one of the most important bands in the development of modern Cuban salsa since its establishment in 1956.

Elito Revé on the Paris Metro - Photo courtesy of Patrick Bonnard

The title song was written and arranged by Pachi and Andy, the pianist and timbalero respectively. They did other arrangements on the album as well. Aisar Hernández, bassist and musical director, also contributed songs and arrangements, and Elito himself wrote two of the songs on album. All in all there are 12 songs including a rumba as well as a traditional changüí performed by Pipi y sus Estrellas Campesinas. I have a particular fondness for Pipi having spent time at a real changüí party at Casa de Pipi in Yateras.

As for the new charangonera, 26-year old Susel "La China", she is the most recent addition to the band having been with Sello LA previously. Although she's not well known...yet...she sings well and has good technique. I am looking forward to seeing this new addition to the group. As I mentioned in the previous report, "La China" sings "Ya sé cantar, ya sé bailar", a song that was recorded by Elio Revé Matos, probably in the 70s according to our discography. It has been given new life by a Pachi/Andy arrangement.

The more I hear about this CD the more excited I get! So ya'll better get ready over there in El Yuma!

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Friday, 05 February 2010, 04:08 AM

Elito Revé y Su Charangón

New CD Recorded & US Concerts in April Confirmed

Elito RevéWe have some very exciting news Timba fans! Elito Revé tells us that they have finished recording their new CD and are now in the mixing stage. I can't say when the CD will hit the streets but let's hope it's soon. Revé's previous CD, "Fresquecito" was unquestionably the best CD of 2007 and won awards for Best Album both in France in 2007 and at Cubadisco 2008. I expect the new CD by Orquesta Revé to be another winner.

The CD has an impressive list of illustrious guest artists such as Chucho Valdés, Pancho Amat and the güajiro Mirabal. And a particular favorite of mine is also on the album: Estrellas Campesinas the changüí group under the direction of Pipi from Yateras, Guantanamo . Of course the regular Revé singers recorded as well, Dagoberto, el Sinsonte, Emilo (El Niño) and Susel (La China). Susel sings "Ya sé cantar, ya sé bailar". I've never heard Revé with a female singer, so it will be interesting to hear the results.

Elito Revé - photo courtesy of Cristian Muñoz

And in equally exciting new Elito tells us that the April tour of the US is confirmed with a number of dates in Miami and New York. I hope someone will  bring them out to the west coast as well. I know California is dying to see them live! Uy uy uy que veo!

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Sunday, 24 January 2010, 02:55 PM

Review - Animals of Cuban Music

Animals of Cuban MusicI am still way behind on my projects due to my five-week vacation, but I have finally published my review of "Animals of Cuban Music: salsa vs reggaeton", Jen Paz's second documentary in her contemporary Cuban music series. The DVD has been out since fall 2009 and really should have been on the gift list of all fans of Cuban music, no matter whether you like timba or reggeaton. For me the documentary is not about trying to convince anyone that one is better than the other or to make fans out of anyone. It is just an honest, unadorned look at what is really happening in Havana today. It also happens to be full of excellent concert footage from both timba and reggaeton concerts.  It is a must-see film for anyone who wants to keep up with the Cuban music scene of today. To read the full review click here.

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Wednesday, 20 January 2010, 03:14 PM

Azúcar Negra Planning March in Miami

Leonel Limonta tells us that the band is planning to be in Miami in March but they are still waiting for a  concrete date. When the first concert is confirmed we will post the information here. In a piece of trivia, Azúcar Negra has a long history with and it was largely because of the Azúcar Negra US Tour of 2000 that developed from being an odd assortment of audio samples scraped together by Kevin into what we are today. Even as has developed over the years, so has Azúcar Negra been through several changes having had  important female vocalists such as Haila Mompie, Monica Mesa, Tanya Pantoja, Biunaikis Marquetti and the current leading lady the lovely Ailyn Dalleras.

Ailyn was only 17 when she joined the band and 19 when she shouldered the role of lead female vocalist. She has always had a beautiful voice but with the years she has also developed a professionalism and a charismatic stage presence. Now at the ripe old age of 23 she will be hitting "El Yuma" for the first time. But Ailyn isn't the only singer. The ladies will enjoy Dayan, ex-Charanga Forever, who has a great voice and is an excellent dancer. He adds a shot of testosterone-loaded energy to the band. Speaking of Ailyn and Dayan, Gabriel from Yemayá's Verse in her 2009 Havana Report said: "Limonta must have two of the most charismatic singers in Havana in those two", and Gabriel is one of the most hard-to-impress people I know, so don't miss it when Azúcar Negra hits the States.

Azúcar Negra - "Con un canto en el pecho"
from the CD "Exceso de equipaje"

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