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Ry Cooder brings his unique guitar skills to the vibrant heart of Cuba - Havana. This album is endowed with a beautiful grace and vitality that reflects the huge talent these musicians are blessed with in abundance. Decades of musical experience combine to form a collection of songs that fill the heart with pleasure and caress the ear. It deserves to, and will, cross the boundaries of musical tastes, appealing to people not normally attracted to Cuban music. Only a very cynical ear indeed could not find something charming here.
The musicianship has been gained over many years of experience in the bars, clubs and dance halls of Havana and Santiago. There are some giants of Cuban music in evidence, pianist Ruben Gonzalez, a pioneer of the Afro Cuban sound, vocalists Ibrahim Ferrer and Compay Segundo add to this the incredible timbalist Julienne Oviedo Sanchez (all of thirteen years old!), Ry Cooder and his son Joachim and you have a broad spectrum of musical generations.
The songs vary from romantic ballads to dance hall salsa, descarga, mambo and boleros but throughout the most important thread running through these compositions is their authenticity, their sense of tradition, just switch on and lose yourself in the treasure that is the Buena Vista Social Club.
I love jazz because I enjoy the freedom.
I was first exposed to jazz when I was 17.
I met Cedar Walton at a concert in San Paulo.
The best show I ever attended was Helio Jambao trio.
The first jazz record I bought was Witchcraft by George Benson.
My advice to new listeners is listen to the old school first.