(Prensa Latina – Cumbancha) Havana, Cuba – Just a year after it was founded and awarded by the popular vote as a Best New Orchestra 1999, the band Clave Cubana became the most attractive offer of Cuban salsa. Its name comes from all the music blowing in the Caribbean breezes and gave them a new cadence, magic and enticing, as if it revived the same instrument that marks the rhythm in Simons’ “El Manisero,” or Lecuona’s “Siboney.”
The birt place of the band’s style took place in Havana, rightfully called “the capital of the Americas.” Here a language known as the rhythm cell, rides on the strength of Cuban syncopation that invades with an unmistakable mark rumba, son, cha-cha-chá and every Cuban rhythm.
Clave Cubana has a dance repertory which takes us deep into music history and celebrates the work of people like Sindo Garay, Miguel Matamoros, Benny Moré, Arsenio Rodríguez and Adolfo Guzmán, many others.The orchestra was founded on May 2, 1999 when a group of young musicians, all graduates from Cuban music schools, set out to recreate the most authentic and varied values of the Cuban music genres, led by its young director Orlando Navarro Villar.
Since its creation, the band performs at the Havana’s top dance music spots. In 2001, it was chosen by Cuban Music Institute to participate in the 1st International “Caliente” Festival in Havana, organized by the Swiss Soundmanagers Company. They were also in hot demand by Cuban Radio and Television stations.
Clave Cubana is called “The youngest Son from Cuba” and the very year of its foundation, the band had such a big impact that some recording companies wanted to sign it and they recorded their first album, from a project backing up singer Carmen Flores, in a work of deep folkloric roots. The second album, a project similar to the first, dealt with the work by Alberto Cárdenas, where the band played along with top exponents of Cuban music.
The quality and professional touch of the latter production was praised by Frank Fernandez, one of the world’s greatest pianists. Both albums were produced by the Panamanian Ire Productions Inc. recording company, and were licensed by the US label Ahí Namá Music, from Hollywood, for its distribution in that country. The first album by Clave Cubana as a band, Dicen que el Son…, was released by Bis Music in the year 2002 and reports encouraging sales.
Author: Angel Romero
Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel produced several specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music and electronic music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World, Lektronic Soundscapes, and Mindchild Records. Angel is currently based in Durham, North Carolina.