Blue Cha Cha

Blue Cha Cha

by Manuel Galbán
     
 

Cuban guitarist Manuel Galbán is quite literally a legend in Cuban music. In his 80 years he was the architect of the hit rock group Los Zafiros' sound; served as musical director of Cuba's national music ensemble; led his own Grupo Batey, which spread the gospel of the island's traditional musical heritage all over the globe; was leadSee more details below

Overview

Cuban guitarist Manuel Galbán is quite literally a legend in Cuban music. In his 80 years he was the architect of the hit rock group Los Zafiros' sound; served as musical director of Cuba's national music ensemble; led his own Grupo Batey, which spread the gospel of the island's traditional musical heritage all over the globe; was lead guitarist of the Buena Vista Social Club and played on its members recordings; and cut the Grammy-winning Mambo Sinuendo in an instrumental duet with Ry Cooder. Galbán's Blue Cha Cha was finished shortly before his death in July of 2011 at the age of 80. Produced and arranged by Juan Antonio Leyva and Magda Rosas Galbán (the guitarist's piano wizard daughter), it was recorded in Havana. Galbán's trademark electric guitar sound and his discerning, wide-ranging taste are everywhere present. Blue Cha Cha contains boleros, danzons, rhythm & blues, rumbas, mambos, sons, and more. The large cast of musicians includes illustrious singers such as Omara Portuando, Rosa Passos, and Trio Esperança. Kora master Sissoko Ballaké works his magic on the brief but stellar jazz-funk of "Batuca." On the title cut, Galbán melds jazzy rhythm & blues and cha cha. Eric Bibb delivers vocally, rising above the fluid shifting rhythms that somehow never leave the pocket. Galbán's solo is tough, poignant. Then he meets Bibb's acoustic in beautiful call-and-response interplay. On "Duele," Portuando, known for her expressive singing, offers one of the most devastating ballads of her long career as a harp, a cello, and a bass accompany her. Galbán's guitar provides her an empathetic anchor and she lets the sorrow flow -- her vocal sounds as if she is near weeping. "Bossa Cubana" finds Galbán revisiting his time with Los Zafiros, melding everything from mambo and bossa to angular early rock & roll. Passos croons amorously on "Alma Mía," as Galbán winds through a jazz trio and strings with elegance and grace. Blue Cha Cha is not all vintage Cuban music, however. "Rumba del Ángel," written by the guitarist and his daughter, employs her electronic keyboards as well as her piano, aided by the stellar percussion of Andrés Coayo and a wordless female backing vocal chorus -- it's contemporary Cuban jazz with a pop twist. The DVD in the package provides an excellent documentary on the making of the album, including (often humorous) interviews with Galbán and the producers and selected video performances of some of its tunes. Blue Cha Cha is not a flashy record; instead, it's a carefully arranged, produced, and executed offering reflecting the maestro's astonishing reach, command, and exacting standards. Cuban music fans will rejoice in this brilliant celebration of an artist whose musical powers were enhanced, not diminished, by time.

Read More

Product Details

Release Date:
06/26/2012
Label:
Concord Records
UPC:
0888072336469
catalogNumber:
33646
Rank:
196141

Tracks

Read More

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Manuel Galbán   Primary Artist,Electric Guitar
Omara Portuondo   Vocals
Trio Esperança   Vocals
Enrique Pla   Drums
Eric Bibb   Acoustic Guitar,Vocals
Emilio Morales   Piano
Dagoberto González   Violin
Efrain Rios   Tres
Roberto García   Trumpet,Fisarmonica
Andres Coayo   Percussion
Rosa Passos   Vocals
Ballaké Sissoko   Kora
Adam Levy   Electric Guitar
Augusto Diago   Violin
Evaristo Denis   Baritone Saxophone
Frank Rubio   Double Bass
Ariel Sarduy   Violin
Desirée Justo   Violin
Alejandro Rodriguez   Cello
José Luís "Chewy" Hernández   Tenor Saxophone
Sori   Background Vocals
Jesus Cruz   Acoustic Guitar,Tres
Marcelo Mercadante   Bandoneon
Carlos José Alvarez   Trombone
Juan Antonio Leyva   Guitar,Conductor,Keyboards,fender rhodes,wah wah guitar
Magda Rosa Galban   Piano,Keyboards
Roberto Herrera   Viola
Alejandro Rodríguez Tirado   Cello
Jannier Rodríguez   Background Vocals
Robin Martínez   Trumpet
Arema Arega-Negussie   Background Vocals
Sisana Martínez   Background Vocals
Ivanovis Garzón   Trombone
Daniela Guitierrez   Violin
Iresi García   Violin
Marta Salgado   Viola
Janier Rodríguez   Background Vocals
Mirtha Batista   Harp
Jackeline Vell   Background Vocals
Yasel Sanchez   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

René Touzet   Composer
Eric Bibb   Composer
Alex Tovar   Composer
Lily Batet   Composer
Mark Orton   Engineer
Manuel Galbán   Composer
Jean Baptiste Moreira   Engineer
André Togni   Engineer
Gerard Gambus   Vocal Arrangements
Daniel Florestano   Executive Producer
Maria Grever   Composer
Carlos Freitas   Mastering
Alberto Vera Morua   Composer
Juan Antonio Leyva   Arranger,Composer,Producer,Sequencing Programmer
Magda Rosa Galban   Arranger,Composer,Producer,Sequencing Programmer
Pau Firpo   Engineer
Arantza Benito Melgar   Associate Executive Producer
Jéronimo Labrada Hernández   Engineer
Wolfano Alejandro   Composer
Luis Rawet Chanivecky   Composer
Magda Rosa Galbáb   Composer
Bea Piloto   Composer
Felix Giraldo   Composer

Read More

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >