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SpanishEnglishFirst Class to Havana - (Worldwide Entertainment) Released 2014

CD Revew: First Class to Havana by Aymee Nuviola (Worldwide Entertainment 2014)
Review by Bill Tilford, all rights reserved

Aymee Nuviola's professional roots include winning recognition at age 15 on Todo El Mundo Canta in Cuba and an early period with Pachito Alonso y Sus Kini Kini.  After working as a duo with her sister in Costa Rica and Mexico, she ultimately began her solo career in Miami.  She is a sonera in the Celia Cruz style, enough so that she will be portraying Celia in a telenovela in Colombia which is based on her life. 

First Class to Havana is her third album in her own name; she appears in earlier albums with Pachito Alonso, NG La Banda, Septeto Santiaguero and Caco Senante.   This is a very solid dance album mostly  in a modern Cuban Salsa style (and at Cuban tempo), my only criticism from a purely musical perspective is that I wish that when a dance band brings in serious Jazz artists like a Gonzalo Rubalcaba and uses them as part of the album, the artist is given space to contribute the degree of excellence that makes them "them". (This is a common enough device in the industry, but still....) Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Ed Calle and Pedrito Martínez all appear briefly here, and what they do here, they do well, but they weren't really given an opportunity to contribute anything truly distinctive. This was a missed opportunity to take what are admittedly some very good songs and elevate them to something memorable. On the other hand, First Class To Havana did win nominations both in the United States and Cuba, so from a business perspective, the strategy was clearly effective, and dancers, who will love this album, will have no cause to complain. 

First Class to Havana was nominated for a Latin GRAMMY in 2014 (Salsa), a GRAMMY (Best Tropical Latin) in 2014 and a Cubadisco in  2015 (Música Popular Bailable - Maestros)  


1. Paco 
2. Tu Si Vives Contento
3. El Espacio
4. De La Habana Hasta Aquí
5. Foto de Familia
6. Yo Te Quiero Un Montón
7. El Ratón
8.  Un Amor Genial
9  Brindemos
10. Yo Soy Así
11. Bonus Track:  La Habana y Tu

Personnel in First Class To Havana

Role - InstrumentName
Lead Vocal Aymee Nuviola
Piano Orlando Guanche 3, 5, 7; Kemuel Roig 1, 2, 6, 8, 9, 10, Bonus Track
Keyboards Kemuel Roig 1,2,8,10; Angel Arce 9
Bass  Manuel Orza 1,4,5,6,8,9,10, Bonus Track
Drums Angel Arce 1,2,6,7,9, Bonus Track
Percussion Angel Arce. Diego Camacho, Willy Torres 10; Jhair Salas 10
Guitar Ahmed Barroso 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,9,10; Lázaro Rodríguez (Bonus Track)
Trumpet Osvaldo Fleites 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8; Julio Díaz 9,10
Trombone Bayron Ramos 1,2,3,4,6,7,8,9,10
Saxophones Juan A. Silveira; Yainer Horta (Bonus Track)
Coros Guianko Gomez; Aymee Nuviola; Beatriz Cesar 9
Guest Artists Gonzalo Rubalcaba (Piano 4); Pedrito Martínez (Percussion, vocal 10); Ed Calle (Saxophone 5); Rubén Rodríguez (Bass 2,3); José Gola (Bass 7); El Mola (Vocal 2); Alexis Valdés (Vocal Bonus Track)
Producers Paolo Simeón, Angel Arce
Executive Producer Paolo Simeón
Musical Producer, Recording and Arrangements Angel Arce 
Mixing and Mastering Carlos Álvarez
Bill Tilford - Sunday, 05 July 2015, 06:01 PM