artandculture At the Mac

@ The Mac- Havana Cuba All Stars

Monday, November 28, 2016 Jennie Velasco

A band comprised of talented artists from the island across the way, Asere made its first stateside appearance to bring the joyful sounds of Havana.  Formed by trumpeter and composer Michel Padrón who came from a musical family, spoke mostly on behalf of the band.  He introduced himself and the inspiration behind what they do and how they represent their homeland.  Michel has worked with a number of bands in a range of different genres of music.  His credits also include accolades, festivals, and working with familiar labels like Putomayo, BMG and Warner.  He has worked with Billy Cobham, Cesarea Évora, Toto la Momposina, Jaques Morelenbaun, Seckou Keita, Chucho Valdés, Leo Brower, Claudio Abbado, Sir George Martin, Omara Portuondo, Nayaband, Gran Big Band del Cabaret Tropicana, Mariano Cívico, Alexis Lefevre, Germán López, Roots Harmonies, ASERE, AMJ Collective and many more. 

The band members also consist of talented individuals who all specialize in their instruments as well as various genres of music.  This is what makes them a versatile and fluent band to bring some of the best island sounds that include cumbias, salsa, mambo, and some romantic ballads.  With a diverse audience, many came to enjoy some of the smoother jazz sounds while others danced in small spaces to familiar tunes.  To my surprise many were senior citizens. and with some percussion heavy songs were still dancing in their seats or happily clapping along.  

I had some favorites, but lets be real...I enjoyed every single song.  Including a more romantic and gorgeous ballad La Flor y La Hoja Seca.  Some songs were instrumental and others had some mixed lead singers, all of them voices like silk or as tasty and delicious as your Abuelita cocoa.  They made reference to all latin countries and it felt all were being represented in the audience. They also sang some covers of some well-known latin artists as well as originals from the wide ranged discography. Using the beauty of music and sounds, they certainly brought some joy with some musical diversity and some fantastic talent.  

Asere is continuing to make its way through the United States spreading many feel good songs and signing autographs.  For more information on the Havana Cuba All Stars or Asere visit the link here for updates.  See a video of one of their songs they performed: Psicologia 

This blog can also be seen at Art and Sol

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