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DM0001 STEP FORWARD: JUAN DE MARCOS AFRO CUBAN ALL STARS

STEP FORWARD: JUAN DE MARCOS AFRO CUBAN ALL STARS

CD WORLD/CUBAN DM AHORA! RECORDS Juan de Marcos Gonzalez, the bandleader, composer, tres-player and musical brain behind the Buena Vista Social Club, presents Step Forward, the latest album under his own name and debut release on his brand-new record label, DM Ahora! Records – the first ever totally independent Cuban-run label. A musical visionary, Marcos has long bee a key figure on the international scene. It was Marcos who teamed up with Nick Gold at UK record company World Circuit in 1997 to re-create the sound of the 1950s Golden Age of Cuban music, a project that led to the worldwide phenomenon Buena Vista Social Club and also paved the way for the extraordinary late stardom of artists like Ruben Gonzalez and Ibrahim Ferrer. In 2005 Marcos has masterminded the most promising development from Cuba for the new millennium with his innovative new label and its first release. Embracing the rich diversity of Cuba’s musical output – from dance to jazz, classical to rap – DM Ahora! aims to use the full range of the country’s heritage to build the sounds of the future. A virtual manifesto of this concept, Step Forward advances a whole new chapter of Cuban musical creation into the spotlight. “We have to use all the heritage of Cuban music to create a sound of the future” say Juan de Marcos “it’s important to have that continuity and fight for our identity”. The musicians, loosely assembled under the Afro Cuban All Star banner, are drawn from a brilliant new crop still little known outside the country. Their backgrounds are remarkably diverse. The cream of new timba performers – lead soneros Tirso Duarte and Leo Vera both sang with the seminal Charanga Habanera – rub shoulders with young jazz aces such as sax and clarinet specialist David Suarez and pianist/ arranger Dave Alfaro. There are hot new percussionists such as Adel Gonzalez and “Pacha” Portuondo and much input from the classical world, from the sumptuous string sections to the presence of artists like Alfaro, a Liszt and Chopin interpreter in a parallel career. Let’s not forget the electric, but also chamber, violinist Luis Lang. Marshalled by a team of five arrangers, including Marcos himself, the stellar company of Step Forward produces a sound of great richness and subtle tonal colour. With the exception of the traditional Afro Cuban religious ‘Batumbata’ “Addimu a Chango” and a classic Arsenio Rodriguez ‘son montuno’ title, “Lo dicen Todas”, the twelve tracks are new compositions. They include ‘boleros’ both sultry and poetic like “Preludio y Fuga”, timba-ballads such as “Barbaridad”, a remarkable post-modern ‘contredanse’, “Esperanza”, a jaunty sex-and-fruit ‘guaracha’, “A Maria le Gusta” and a mini-suite in memory of the late Ruben Gonzalez, whose octogenarian superstardom Marcos was greatly responsible for. There is even an excursion into the highly deserving world of Franco- Cuban musical cooperation, with a delightful guest appearance by one of France’s top stars, tropicalista Bernard Lavilliers on the latter’s classic, “On The Road Again” . Step Forward is a blueprint for the future, but above all a statement of DM Ahora! and a snapshot of where one of Cuba’s top musical creators is at right now. 01 - 13.3.2.21.1.1.8.5 02 - Adivinador 03 - Barbaridad 04 - Lo dicen todas 05 - Addimu a Chango 06 - Glicy's Mood 07 - Preludio y Fuga 08 - Esperanza 09 - A Maria le gusta 10 - El Bolero de Juan Carlos 11 - On the Road Again featuring Bernard Lavilliers 12 - Elegia a Ruben Gonzalez

Price  $19.95
List price $29.95 ~ You save $10.00




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