Que Linda Es Mi Cuba

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The Cuban campesino band that calls itself Saborit today actually began in the '80s as Grupo Eduardo Saborit in honor of Eduardo Saborit, the late composer of "Que Linda Es Mi Cuba," the song after which this album is titled. One of the most fondly remembered anthems of the Cuban revolution, it does not, ironically, appear on this recording. Nor was Eduardo Saborit himself ever in the group. But if that's all a bit confusing, don't worry, the music isn't. It's as purely Cuban as the benchmark productions of the Buena Vista Social Club, albeit with a more rural edge, influenced by such traditional styles as son, cumbia, rhumba, and guaracha and performed to perfection by the eight-piece ensemble founded (and still led) by Leonardo Garcia Alarcon. Que Linda Es Mi Cuba is the first U.S. release by the group from the town of Manzanillo that has been entertaining the locals for years, some of the players for upwards of four decades. Using traditional Caribbean instruments such as the tres guitar and the guiro, Alarcon concocts a sparkling, danceable set built around Saborit's intuitive interplay, soaring lead vocals, bold harmonies, and overall festive mood. The sound is crystalline, allowing each player's contribution to make its mark throughout this consistently invigorating performance.

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