All posts by Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel produced several TV 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 albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World.

24th International Percussion Festival Percuba 2003

(Prensa Latina) Havana, Cuba – Well-known musicians from the United States, Mexico, Argentina and Venezuela and their Cuban colleagues will take part in the 24th International Percussion Festival Percuba 2003, April 15-19, announced Festival director Lino Neira. The official stated that instrumentalist Sammy Figueroa (Puerto Rico) -producer of musicians such as Quincy Jones and Phil Ramone (US)- as well as Autonomous University of Tamaulipas Professor Evaristo Aguilar (Mexico) who will perform in the show Ritmos de la Huasteca.

The Monterrey Percussion Ensemble (Mexico) -founded 10 years ago by Guillermo Villarreal, Alberto Murillo (Argentina), one of the most acclaimed instrumentalists in his country, and Fred Wickinson (United States), among others, will also attend. The Tuopali Duet (Spain) will arrive with its hit “Mestizaje,” a successful blend of native popular notes and its professional sound, with instruments ranging from the Jembe to the marimba. Another important participant will be the Venezuelan project “La Patria es el Hombre.”

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Shakori Hills GrassRoots Festival

Silk Hope, USA – Shakori Hills GrassRoots Festival is four days of performances in NorthCarolina, by over forty bands from a stunning variety of styles and cultures. Native American, Cajun, Reggae, Bluegrass, African, Latin, Zydeco, Roots Rock, Country, Old Time and more. There will be a series of workshops, seminars, and speakers with themes ranging from sustainability and the healing arts, to human rights and indigenous traditions and cosmology.

For more information, contact: Shakori Hills GrassRoots (919) 542-8142. E-mail: shakorihills@grassrootsfest.org

The World Music bands that are playing: –Thomas Mapfumo- African, chimurenga
–Carnavalito- Latin Jazz
–Alejandro Escovedo- Latin
–Los Pochos- Conjunto
–Moontee Sinquah- Native American
–The Overtakers- Reggae
–Mickey Mills and the Steel- Steel Drum, Calypso- Soca
–Amy Glicklich- Tradional Chants
–Keith Secola and the Wildband of Indians- Native American
–Freeman Owle- Native American
–Willie Lowery- Native American

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Vintage Recordings by Legendary King Sunny Ade

King Sunny Ade – Synchro Series
New York, NY – IndigeDisc returns on April 22nd with the release of Synchro Series by the legendary King Sunny Ade.

Ade and his African Beats have thrilled audiences worldwide for over two decades with the scintillating West African sounds known as Juju music. However, while releasing several stateside albums over the years, recorded specifically for the Western market, his indigenous Nigerian recordings, released concurrently in Africa, have never before been available in the United States.

Synchro Series now makes two of those original albums from Ade’s creative peak available for the first time. Taking the listener on a journey back to a landmark period for African music, Synchro Series features pristine remastering, rare and early photos of Sunny Ade, and three sets of detailed, highly informed liner notes by IndigeDisc founder and longtime Ade manager, Andy Frankel; music critic for Nigeria’s prestigious Guardian newspaper, Benson Idonije; and respected World Music journalist J. Poet.

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Bis Music, a Successful Havana Record Company

(Prensa Latina) Havana, Cuba – Bis Music, born six years ago, and producer of Grammy Winner La Rumba Soy Yo, is a commercial success that stems directly from Cuba’s cultural roots. No matters what is said about how the Grammy awards are “plotted”, it is an award similar to the Oscars. When it is not reached, it is despised, but if it is received, it is front-page news.

According to General Manager Belkis Vilalagut, the young Cuban recording company has a small professional team, mainly conformed by women. She said the company currently has 330 masters after buying the Caribe Production catalogue six months ago. This has increased its music stock, allowing Cuba to recover the cultural patrimony of a very important decade for Cuban music.

It has three collections: Meneo, Sesamo and Tributo. Now, we are taking on everything related to the former Caribe Productions as an additional production. The countries where the label is most accepted are the United States, Spain and Mexico. The United States with the anthology music, the Tributo Collection, and the new productions, are always interested in a first edition and the sales are not bad.

According to the manager, they are releasing a disc-catalogue for Cubadisco (Cuban Music Festival, in May), to promote Cuban businesses or others operating in the country. Promotion has been always present in magazines and newspapers and now it will be in CD-form and I think it will be welcomed, Vilalagut concluded.

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Recording Project Comes to Life in Matanzas

(Prensa Latina) Matanzas, Cuba – For the first time in the Matanzas province music scene, a high tech recording project comes to life to promote talents from the territory. Under the name Quinta Luna -after the place where the first Danzon was performed in Cuba on December 28, 1878- the label expects to produce up to seven CDs a year.

Project representative Juan Francisco González said that the recordings would be made in a recording studio at Havana’s Music Institute, main production center of the Matanzas label and for other Cuban labels.

Before the end of summer, a CD by the Cantarelas trio, from Cardenas, will be finished and another by the Fusion Quartet is scheduled for recording. The bands Aguas Tibias and Lira Matancera -the latter celebrating its 80th anniversary in 2004- are getting ready to record.

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Drums will be heard in PERCUBA 2003

(Prensa Latina) Havana, Cuba – The Cuban Percussionists Society announced the 14th International Percussion Festival of “PERCUBA 2003,” April 15-19, at the Amadeo Roldan Theater and the Casa de las Americas. A contest will take place April 16-18, also at the National Folkloric Group venue. The Festival will include a series of important theoretical and practical events in its program and is designed for education, promotion and exchange among national and international representatives from different fields of percussion. Professional or traditional performers, professors, students, researchers, composers and/or instrument or accessories manufacturers, as well as all friends of Cuban percussion are expected to participate.

Three living percussion masters will be paid homage: Regino Jimenez Saez, Eladio Terry Gonzalez “Don Pancho”, Lino Arturo Neira Betancourt and also the late Jorge Alfonso Campos “El Niño” and Ramon “Mongo” Santamaria. In 2002, the First PERCUBA Award went to Mexican Reynaliz Herrera Martinez.

The list of guest artistic projects include: ARGENTINA: didactic recital by Alberto Murillo (Patagonia); CUBA: Concert by Don Pancho Terry and his All Stars, Concert by Diakara, Concert by Sin Palabras, Didactic Conference by Cesar Rivero Sanz, among others.

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Cuban Singer Ibrahim Ferrer to Sing in Puerto Rico

Ibrahim Ferrer
Ibrahim Ferrer
(Prensa Latina) San Juan, Puerto Rico – Cuban musician Ibrahim Ferrer, member of the 1998 Grammy Award winning Buena Vista Social Club project, will perform April 19 in this city, where he will arrive from the US. According to an announcement by Grandes Eventos Co. Public Relations Vice-President Lidda Garcia Acosta, he will perform at San Juan’s Pier 10 Arena, with a repertoire of Son, Guarachas and Boleros.

Seventy-six-year-old Ferrer is currently touring the US, including performances in Arizona, Texas, San Francisco and New York. In 1997, producer and composer Ry Cooder chose him for the Buena Vista Social Club project, where he took part in 12 of the 14 CD tracks. Since then his popularity increased and he won two Latin Grammys, one with the Buena Vista Social Club and the other as Best New Artist in 2001.

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Cuban Musicians Demand Freedom for the Five

(Prensa Latina) Havana, Cuba – Azucar Negra, one of the first Cuban bands mixing popular music (son, salsa, timba) with socio-political lyrics, will start a tour to demand freedom for the five Cuban prisoners in the US. The artists will perform several concerts all over Cuba starting in May to present the song “Los que Luchamos,” (Those of us in the Fight) written to honor Ramon Labañino, Fernando Gonzalez, Gerardo Hernandez, Antonio Guerrero and Rene Gonzalez.

The band’s director Leonel Limonta -also author of pieces performed by Orchestra Aragon and Issac Delgado’s group, stated that this will be his modest contribution to the international organizations and the entire Cuban people’s demands for the freedom of the Five. Their second CD will include the song Sin Mirar Atras (Without Looking Back), scheduled to be finished this coming week on the EGREM label, ready for promotion on their tour. After playing in Cuba, the musicians will perform in several cities of Holland, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, France and Belgium.

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Homage to Adalberto Alvarez for his 30-year Career

Adalberto y Su Son - Para Bailar Casino
Adalberto y Su Son – Para Bailar Casino
(Prensa Latina) Camagüey, Cuba – Adalberto Alvarez Zayas received the title of Illustrious Son of Camagüey Province, where he started the career that has turned him into a symbol of popular Cuban dance music. The distinction was granted by the People’s Power Provincial Assembly, on the 30th anniversary of his professional career as a composer, author, arranger, singer and pianist.

Creator of the orchestras Son 14, in 1978, and Adalberto y su Son, in 1983, he has performed in dozens of countries and has authored more than 200 songs including, “A Bayamo en Coche,” “Dale Como Es,” “¿Y Qué Tu Quieres que te Den?”, “Si No Fuera Por las Mujeres,” and “A Bailar el Toca Toca.”

The current director of Adalberto y Su Son, Alvarez has participated in the recording of more than 50 discs and the latest, Para Bailar Casino, (To Dance Casino) will be released in 2003.

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