Quimbombó (Testa Dura Records TDCD 001, 2004)
Quimbombó is a creative New York-based band (there seems to be a band with
the same name in the West Coast) that plays traditional
Cuban son. The American soneros are led by percussionist Nick Herman, who
studied with Cuban masters. The lead vocalist is Cuban musician David Oquendo,
who also plays guitar. The rest of the musicians are American and Latin American
instrumentalists who are very active in the New York City jazz and Latin music
scene. The group shows a deep passion for traditional Cuban son.
This is substantiated by the fact that six of the seven songs are classics from the Cuban
repertoire. The other two are original pieces by band leader Nick Herman.
Quimbombó (pronounced keem-bohm-BO) is the title of a
classic Cuban són popularized by Conjunto Chappotín in the 1950’s. A word of
Congolese origin, it means “okra” in Spanish.