In his feature on Cuba, Jan Fairley writes (Songlines #60, 2009, p. 27):
The misleading mythology of Ry Cooder as the prince who kissed back to life the princess (music), who had pricked her finger on the revolutionary spinning wheel, has blinded people to the fact that, not only was there always new music in Cuba, but the old music never stopped to be played to the older generation in clubs and classic hotels. While no one doubts the beauty of the music itself, the negative effect of the popular revival of Buena Vista sounds for audiences outside Cuba is that tourists arrive on the island expectig all Cuban musicians to be 'old' and hear Chan Chan everywhere. Cuban musicians puzzle as to why retro-romantic, pre-revolutionary music sung by a bunch of veterans appeals to a worldwide audience, while Cubans participate in more vital styles created by NG La Banda, Cándido Fabré, Manolito y su Trabuco, Haila and a host of others.It's a shame none of these musicians were featured in this blog — until now, that is. This week's song is El Trágico by the creators of timba: NG La Banda.