Magazine article New Internationalist

[Afro-Cuban All Stars. A Toda Cuba le Gusta]

Magazine article New Internationalist

[Afro-Cuban All Stars. A Toda Cuba le Gusta]

Article excerpt

If Latin lovers have been been wondering where all the clave rhythms have gone they should soon be in seventh heaven. Full brass, swinging, sensual rhythms and full-throated vocals are reasons enough to brand these three discs 'must-haves'.

Collectively, they cover an enormous amount of original Cuban material, offering everything from cha cha cha -- invented in the 1940s by Orquesta America's leader, Enrique Jorrin -- to golden age son. Not surprisingly there's quite a fluid arrangement in terms of musicians -- foremost among them Queen of campesina musica Celina Gonzalez and Cuba's answer to Piaf, Omara Portuondo.

In offering present-day facsimiles of the great tunes of the 1940s and 1950s these albums refer back to the past just as much as they filter it through new eyes. This is something that's done in recording studios every day: the difference here is that the directors of all three records have assembled as many original band members possible, brought them into contact with cent recording facilities and these are the results: music of a timeless and boundless energy. Working its way through interpretations of boleros, danzon, cha cha cha and guaracha-son, Tumi's handsome Las Leyendas de la Musica Cubana certainly has all bases covered and it forms -- along with an excellent accompanying booklet -- a great foundation stone for any serious Latin aficionado. …

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