During the 14 days we were in Cuba, live music was ubiquitous. In all three provinces we visited you could hear live music in restaurants, bars, plazas, and on the streets. The music in general ranged from good to very good. Cuba is more musical than Puerto Rico in this sense, but, as Cubans themselves were quick to point out, Puerto Rico has better singers: Jerry Rivera, Tego Calderón, Olga Tañón, Cheo Feliciano, José Feliciano, Gilberto Santa Rosa, Marc Anthony, etc. Of all the music groups from Puerto Rico, they invariably would mention Calle 13 as one of their favorites. We danced to live music in a couple of places in La Habana. We tried to make it to La Casa de la Música in Centro Habana, but the timing was not right. Perhaps next time…
We visited La Bodeguita del Medio, one of Hemingway’s hangouts and a favorite tourist destination, to see/hear the band Tradisón, recommended by our friend Armando Espinosa. Check out the video of their music and Petra dancing.
At the end of the video you see a man dressed in white with a hat and a blue scarf. He came to me and asked a couple of questions about Petra and I. He told me he had visited Puerto Rico and had performed with Ramito, the legendary country music singer and a fine décima (10-line improvised poem) composer-singer. The man went away and returned in less than 5 minutes with a décima about Petra and I that he had just composed and typed on the spot. Of course I gave him a good tip. He is Orlando Laguardia, the official poet of La Bodeguita del Medio. Here is the décima he composed for us, typed on his personal stationery. Wonderful! Click to view it larger.
Petra se comio el show! She can dance!!! Way to go! :)