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CD Review: Cubafonía by Dayme Arocena (Brownswood Recordings 2017)
Review: Bill Tilford (all rights reserved)
This is Daymé Arocena's third album (and fourth recording in her own name if one includes the 2015 Havana Cultura Sessions EP); she can also be found in Jane Bunnett's Maqueque project. Her earlier albums are impressive, but it is this album, Cubafonía, where she finds the magical chemistry between Cuban music, Funk, Soul and Jazz that makes the recording truly jump out at you as an album. She is accompanied by many of the best of the younger generation of Cuba's Jazz artists (drummer Ruly Herrera, just for one example, was just awarded a Premio Cubadisco for his own group, Real Project).
Musically, this is a tasty mix of Rumba (Eleggua, La Rumba Me Llamo Yo), 6/8 Afro (Maybe Tomorrow), Cuban dance music (Negra Caridad, in which her style has inspired comparisons to Celia Cruz by some other writers; Mambo Na Ma, which incorporates elements of Soul and ends with a passage evocative of a street party in New Orleans), Ballad (Como, Todo Por Amor, Angel ), a nice Cuban Funk number (It's Not Gonna Be Forever), and Changüi Jazz (Valentine).
Maybe Tomorrow and It's Not Gonna Be Forever are sung in English. .Como is a mix of English and Spanish lyrics.
Here is the official video version of La Rumba Me Llamo Yo:
2. La Rumba Me Llamo Yo
3. Lo Que Fue
4. Maybe Tomorrow
5. Negra Caridad
6. Mambo Na' Ma'
8. Todo Por Amor
10. It's Not Gonna Be Forever
Technical and Musical Credits for Cubafónia
|Role - Instrument||Name|
|Lead Vocal||Daymé Arocena|
|Piano||Jorge Luis Lagarza|
|Bass||Gastón Joya (1,2,5,7,8,9 Rafael Aldama (3 4,6,10)|
|Percussion||Yaroldy Abreu; Marcos Yosvany Díaz (1)|
|Tenor Sax, Clarinet||Emir Santacruz|
|Baritone Sax||Yuniet Lombida|
|Trombone||Heikel Fabian Trimiño|
|Guitar||Rober Luis Gómez|
|Backing Vocals||Leonel Ernesto Lastres, Daniela J. Barreto, Jorge Luis Lagarza, Mayquel González; Dexter Story (10); Bárbara Llanes & Dreyser Durruthy (1)|
|Strings (4,7)||Miguel Atwood Ferguson|
|Other instrumentation (11)||Gastón Joya (Marimbula); Ruly Herrera (Drums); Lino Lores (Tres)|
|Producers||Dexter Story, Daymé Arocena|
|Executive Producer||Gilles Peterson|
|Recording||Alfonso Peña; Amhed Ali González (assistant)|
|Mix||Daymé Arocena, Dexter Story, Josh Franks, Martin Iverson|
|Recorded at||Estudios Abdala, Habana Cuba (additional recording and mixing at Dairy Limited Studios, London, UK, Stagg Street Studio, Van Nuys, CA|