CultuCuba Catalog of Events

U.S. Tours by Cuban groups

Elio Revé y su Charangón

U.S. Tour (2013) Arranged and Produced by Manuel Suarez & CultuCuba

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Orquesta Revé, commonly known as "El Charangon", is a music legend in Cuba and is famous worldwide. The Orquesta Revé was founded in 1956 by Elio Revé, a brilliant musician from Guantanamo who died in 1996. Today it is his son, Elito Revé, who ensures the musical direction of the band. Many of the musicians and singers currently at the forefront of the Cuban music scene have been at one time or another members of Orquesta Revé, and it is probably for that reason that the band was given the nickname of the "Mother" orchestra.

In the more than half-century of its existence, the Orquesta Revé has been not only an incomparable orchestra of popular dance music, but also a laboratory from which other orchestras originated, such as Ritmo Oriental, Los Van Van, daN Den, the 440, Pupy, Chucho Valdes, Yumuri and others. Orquesta Revé has also been the source of other innovative and successful musical formulas as well.

Within Elio's artistic formation in Guantanamo, there is distinct evidence in the music of the mixed cultural heritages of Cuba, most noticeably the beautiful Afro-Cuban musical synthesis from a combination of both Afro-Spanish and Afro-french influences present in the different historical periods of Cuba's development.

Revé experimented with the music. He changed the format of the orchestra to add certain element of the charanga such as violins and elements of son instrumentation such as the trombone. He maintained the special rhythm played by the changüí bongocero but moved it to the timbales, thus maintaining certain essential attributes of changüí while modernizing the format and arrangements to create an “urban” changüí. This new musical style was very well received and finally the changüí had reached national popularity. Thus he is called the “father of changüí”

Maykel Blanco y su Salsa Mayor

First U.S. Tour (2011) Arranged and Produced by Manuel Suarez & CultuCuba

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Photo Maykel Blanco performing

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"Maykel Blanco y su Salsa Mayor" is one of the most popular new talents in the Salsa world offers an updated sound, with a fresh and youthful image. They have an extensive repertoire of popular dance music(salsa and timba), but also compose ballads, fusions and jazz. The group is comprised of seventeen musicians, who together create a unique sound that combines the old with the new.

Maykel Blanco was born on January 21, 1981 in Havana, Cuba. As very young child, Maykel was involved in cultural activities at school, as well as in his neighborhood and in other public places. He taught himself to play piano in order to write and arrange hs own songs. At the age of 12, he began to study percussion at night school "Geraldo Guanche" and later on at the conservatory "amadeo Roldan". When he was just 15 years old, he established received multiple awards.

At 18 years old, he formed his first orchestra: "Suprema Ley", associated to "Centro Provincial de la Musica Rafael Somavilla" in the province of Matanzas. Just two years later as the orchestra was created, a Spanish record company labeled "Envidia Record" included him in their catalog. The young Maykel became one of the most important music producers, revolutionizing the company's work. He produced over 12 CDs and recorded as a percussionist in more than 40 CDs.

At 23, Maykel founded Salsa Mayor acting as composer, arranger, pianist and backing vocalist. "Maykel Blanco y su Salsa Mayor" made their first public debut in Havana, on October 10, 2004 and quickly exploded on the salsa scene. In 2005, with a very clear concept of current Cuban popular music, Maykel assumed the position as musical director of "Salsa Mayor" devoting all his energy, creativity and musical talent to the group. The sameyear, the group received five nominations and awards, one of which was "Best Art Direction" by the event Lucas, which promotes Cuban video production. Over a short time the group became in high demand and placed themselves amongst the top musical groups in Cuba.

The group has toured internationally through Italy, France, Belgium, Switzerland, Luxemburg, The Netherlands, Demark, Poland, Sweden and Peru, they have performed in important festivals, plazas and night clubs in major cities throughout the world. Since 2007, the group has been the center of attraction in the latino music stage in Europe. In Italy the group received the award for "The best Cuban popular music group" in 2006-2007. The same year, they received the prize for the best live concert in Paris, France. "Maykel Blanco y su Salsa Mayor" faithfully continues the richness of Cuban popular music, and many consider them as "La Maquina Musical de Cuba" Popular pieces such "Recoge y vete", "Esto est" "Cimarron," "Que tengo," "Anda y Pegate", "Si le gusta repite," and Quitame lo malo" among others, have enshrined Maykel Blanco to the list great creators. In 2008 "Maykel Blanco y su Salsa Mayor" ranked first in the Hits Parade of Cuban Radio, gaining even more followers in the country and abroad.

Pascual Cabrejas y su Tumbao Habana

Plans for a U.S. Tour Currently in Progress

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History goes back to 1980 in Guantánamo, eastern region of Cuba and cradle of Changüí -musical rhythm born in that province- under the sponsorship of Nueva Trova and Movimiento de Artistas Aficionados, a group of children played the Son Montuno in a very special way. The name of the musical group was Grey and it was the preliminary step of what is today is Tumbao Habana.

After that teen musical experience, some of those adolescents decided to undertake a project with the fundamental aim of assuming Son as their main musical genre although they will also approach Changüí, Chachachá, Mambo, Mozambique and other Latin rhythms highlighting Merengue, Bachata, Cumbia and Latin Jazz

To endeavor this work, they looked for other talented musicians who had the same musical interest and using the name Tumbao (which is precisely the cadence of Son, the characteristic rhythm of regularly repeated sounds that distinguish Cubans from the rest of the world) and HABANA (because it is the Cuban capital and the place where soneros of the whole Island converge) and debuted as a musical group, on December 29, 1997 at the renowned Tropicana Cabaret.

Since then, this musicians have carried out a notorious work: The sonority they have created is such remarkable that they are recognized by an audience which precisely follows them due to the way they express Cuban popular music. This is possible not only for the talent of these young people but also due to the fact that they were graduated from different music schools.

Performances at different cities of Japan, Italy, Belgium, Germany, Spain and Mexico, the most prestigious plazas in the country, tourist centers, radio and television programs, winners of several awards from national festivals and main responsibles of ''Tumbao Habana'' CD under Bis Music label, having great national and international acceptance and the CD " Ese huevo quiere sal" recorded for Karl Yor label, shape the artistic career of this band which having six years of foundation, it already occupies a highlight position among the most popular groups of the Cuban new musical generation playing danceable popular music.

In December 2007 Tumbao Habana celebrated their 10th anniversary. The group was founded in 1997 by director and keyboardist Pascualito Cabrejas. During that time they have earned themselves a place in the Havana timba scene with weekly concerts at the EGREM venues.

Pascualito has a facility for finding new talent, and Tumbao Habana has given many young musicians and singers their first taste of the Casa de la Música circuit as well as foreign tours, such as their regular trips to Peru. The band consists of piano, keyboard, bass, timbal with kick drum, congas, güiro and a very diverse horn section featuring two trumpets, trombone and sax. The front line has three singers, although in concert Pascualito occasionally leaves the keyboard to join on coro.

Tumbao Habana has released two studio CDs, Tumbao Habana (2000) and Ese Huevo Quiere Sal (2002), and they plan to record another in 2008. Their studio CDsare a mix of styles including timba, salsa, reggae-salsa, orchestrated rumba, mambo-rap and covers of traditional Cuban songs

In addition, Tumbao Habana has a number of radio demos that have become hits in Cuba and among well-informed timberos around the world. These include Johana, Amanezco and most recently La Familia Cubana. The demos are all excellent timba numbers and indicate that the 2008 CD should be a hit. The Tumbao Habana Videos section has a number of their demos that you can enjoy while we wait for the new CD.

While the studio CDs are a mix of styles, their concerts are timba na' ma´'. Well, that's not completely true. The playlist may include a ballad, but when they playdance music they mean business. The musicians are talented, and the live versions of the songs allow many of the members to demonstrate their virtuosity during solos.

Tumbao Habana doesn't have the name recognition of the first-line groups in Havana, but they are a hard-working timba band, with a faithful following and a sello that appeals to dancers. On your next trip to Havana take the opportunity to catch them at the Casas de la Música.

7 Potencias

U.S. Tour (2013) Sponsored and Produced by Manuel Suarez & CultuCuba

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Photo 7 Potencias U.S. Tour

Photos 7 PotenciasPhotos US Tour

The 7 Potencias Company was founded in Havana, Cuba on September 13, 1999. Its individual members have worked with each other for many years as members of other dance companies, and prior to that, as students at the various dance schools. This high degree of cumulative professional experience, and the investigative work which has gone into the development of the company's own artistic work, has gained 7 Potencias quick acceptance and support by the Cuban public. Just recently in November 2002, 7 Potencias won first place in the prestigious Wemilere Festival in Guanabacoa, Cuba.

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