Cuban Music: Crossing Borders

I just got an email about this upcoming show on BET:



WHAT: Journey with BET into the soul-stirring musical world of Cuba, with the fascinating producer, musical director, performer Juan De Marcos as your guide.

WHEN: On BET This Sunday, 1 p.m.

On BET JAZZ Tuesday, September 30, 10 p.m.

WHO: Cuban Music: Crossing Borders is a BET Hispanic Heritage special that illuminates the gloriously rich history of the Afro-Cuban All Stars, the phenomenal group of Cuban musicians that was assembled by De Marcos to resurrect the lush big band stylings of Havana, Cuba.

The BET special explores the sound and culture of Afro-Cuban music as it follows these magnetic performers on tour in Japan and in the U.S. The special takes viewers backstage with the musicians and into Cuban studio sessions.

Interviewed are Juan De Marcos, the incomparable Ibrahim Ferrer, Luis Frank, Masacote Carillo and Pedro Calvo. The production also features a special interview with Compay Segundo, the charming frontman of the band who passed away this summer at the age of 95.

MORE: Juan De Marcos is the architect of popular Cuban music who, by drawing upon the roots of his country’s traditional “son” music, developed an innovative new cultural expression with masterful fidelity. Under De Marcos’ direction the Afro-Cuban All Stars recorded such acclaimed albums as A toda Cuba le gusta (Grammy Nominated), Distinto Diferente (Latin Billboard Award Nominated), the phenomenal Buena Vista Social Club (Grammy Award Winner) and its subsequent recordings Buena Vista Social Club Presents Ibrahim Ferrer (Grammy Nominated, Latin Grammy Award Winner) and Buena Vista Social Club presents Omara Portuondo (Grammy and Latin Grammy Nominated).

The Buena Vista Social Club (BVSC) was hailed as one of the most important productions of the century, as it introduced the sensational polyrhythmic sounds of Afro Cuban rhythms to the world. A surprising runaway hit, the album showcased the renaissance of Cuban music to which De Marcos’ life is dedicated. It was De Marcos’ reassembling of the retired legendary Cuban musicians and convincing them to record again that was the foundation of BVSC.

De Marcos has exciting new projects coming out this year which you will hear more about. One is the CD/DVD Live in Japan, expected for release in February. The other is Breaking the Rules, expected in the summer of 2004 accompanied by an Afro Cuban All-Stars tour.

Electronic Music Guide

All you electronic music (such a wide-ranging category) fans should check out Ishkur’s Guide to Electronic Music. This is a very well done guide, with flowcharts detailing the off-shoots of the main genres. And of course each genre has sample songs. (via CapsGetPeeled – reminds me of that old Ice-T song ‘Peel Their Caps Back’.. ah, the good old days back in L.A., crusing in my Prelude bumping all that old school ish.)

Poor Mike Tyson

Mike Tyson should have stuck with his ex-wife, Monica. (At least there would have been some business sense in the family.) As he’s filing bankruptcy, she’s turning a serious profit on Mike’s old crib:

50 Cent put a lot more on his new mansion in Connecticut. The rapper just purchased the home that once belonged to former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson.

50 bought the 48,000 sq. ft., 52-room mansion with servants’ quarters and a boat house for $4.1 million from Tyson’s ex-wife, Monica Turner Tyson.

The boxing champ signed the house over to her for $1 as part of a divorce settlement. He bought the home in 1996 for $2.7 million.

(via EURWeb)

The Identity Blogging Meme

In case anyone hasn’t seen this meme yet, Prometheus 6 has a post which tracks many of the posts in the Indentity Blogging Meme. It’s a very interesting discussion which I’ve finally gotten around to reading. It all started by Cecily @ Formica asking ‘What does it mean to be a black blogger’. It’s since been expounded upon by brown (isn’t it funny how most ‘black’ people’s skin is really brown, but we’re still called ‘black’?), white, Muslim, and other bloggers.

NBC’s Smoking Crack!

It amazes me how companies do things to piss off their (most fervent) customers. NBC has altered the start and end times of some of their Thursday night shows apparently to keep TiVo (and other PVRs) users from recording certain CBS shows. Here’s what they’ve done:

  • 8:00 Friends
  • 8:48 Will & Grace
  • 9:27 Coupling
  • 9.59 ER

The effect of this is that if someone has ER as a higher priority than CSI (9 – 10), then CSI will not be recorded because it conflicts with ER by one minute. However, if CSI is a higher priority ER won’t be recorded. TiVo users can manually tweak their schedules to record both shows, but it’s likely that many people would never even know about these conflicts until after the fact. The result will be a lot of pissed off people. (Of course those with dual tuner machines may not have this problem at all.) My guess is that NBC will shoot themselves in the foot with this madness, especially in the cases where people have the CBS shows prioritized. I guess this is the type of ish we’ll have to put up with as the networks try to fight the incursion of PVRs into the mainstream.
Continue reading “NBC’s Smoking Crack!”

Verizon to Allow Land Numbers for Cells

And so it begins! Verizon has jumped the gun and announced an agreement to allow customers to turn their landline phone numbers into cell phone numbers. All the carriers have to allow mobile numbers to be portable (you can take your number with you when you switch carriers) by November 24th, but they’ve been fighting landline portability. They’ll be scrambling now that Verizon has made this announcement. Fun times in the phone industry!