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TIPICO ORIENTAL - biography
Born of a fusion of Spanish and African traditions in the Oriente region, in the eastern part of the island, the son continues to enjoy exceptional vitality, and is the source of the basic rhythm of the music that today is known as salsa. Its antecedents go back to the 16th century, with the mythical group founded in
In Oriente, the son was first played by the trovadores (from the French "troubadour"), singers who accompanied themselves on the guitar or the tres, and by little groups known as bungas; later it was performed by larger groups, the estudiantinas (inspired by the tunas of the Spanish students) and played in the sociedades de son, clubs devoted to this musical genre. Structurally, the son consists of two parts: the son largo, which states the theme, and the montuno, with the refrain, sung by the
One of the characteristics of the son is the soneo, a vocal improvisation in which the singer gives free rein to his imagination and virtuosity. Sometimes it is addressed to a listener, or it may make a humourous retort to a provocation, or a comment on some particular events. The cheeky guaracha with its more spirited tempo, which appeared in
In the early twenties, numerous Cuban musicians, attracted by the glitter of
A native of Cienfuegos and offspring of a musical family (his cousin Guido Sarría is the conguero of the well-known Orquesta Aragón), Isidro Sarría Aristica has been leader of Típico Oriental for about fifteen years. He had previously been guitarist accompanying the duo Los Idaído (made up of the singers Ida La Guardia and Walfrido Guevara) and on his own he constitutes an extraordinary repository of memory of the son.
In this record, Típico Oriental performs as a quartet with Isidro Sarría Aristica (vocal and guitar), Félix Marrero González (tres), Rolando Romaguera Cisneros (vocal and maracas) and Hugo Valdés Giral (bongo). Listeners will appreciate the graceful, antiquated flavour of this music, and also the stunning solos on the tres - a more piquant, metallic instrument than the guitar - by Marrero González.
With this album, Típico Oriental brings us an anthology of original songs composed by its leader, Isidro Sarría Aristica. Love is the predominant theme in all its aspects: ardent in Déjame soñar, bitter and resigned in Huyendo de tí, lonely in Refúgiate en mí, filled with hope in Eterna melodía, poetic and refined in Nadie, based on the verses of Nicolás Guillén, tender in No dudes, nostalgic in Diálogo, lyrical in Habla el Amor and Por tus cosas, passionate in Sublime Sacrificio.
Ensalada de sones brings us a pot-pourri of celebrated sounds from the past, including Olvido (by Miguel Matamoros), Papá Montero - an elegy in honour of a legendary rumba musician - and Caballero, silencio, one of Sexteto Habanero's first great hits. The song Canto a Benny Moré, by Rolando Romaguera, pays homage to that formidable sonero of the fifties (nicknamed El Bárbaro del ritmo).
This is an irresistible, authentic music, uncontaminated by the commercial virus that has debilitated so many contemporary pieces. "Arise and dance!" the Good Samaritan would doubtless have said, if he had heard Típico Oriental.
Típico Oriental « ETERNA MELODIA » - CD Lusafrica 262582