Trio Words: traditional trova for the 21st century


"Sublime" is the word. The trova that is played in the center of Cuba, at least since the mid-nineteenth century, that was the land of proletarians, of people who worked during the day (the Tobacco Crown, the Pharmaceutical Companioni) to surrender then to the nocturnal bohemia, continues being tremendously sublime. In their language, in their ways of interpreting music, even in the delicacy with which their performers dress. In that wake has been uploaded Lo que dice mi cantar, the most recent album of the Trío Palabras, integrated by the villagers from Liane Pérez, Nubia González and Vania Martínez.

Published under the American-Canadian label Muxía Music, the album collects 11 pieces as a tribute to the trova from different periods and regions of the country. Since El vendedor de agua Lorenzo Hierrezuelo, who opens the album like a proclamation, going through Esta vez tocó perder, from María Teresa Vera -juro que “esta vez” no extrañé para nada Veinte años-, even that spirit anthem that is Pensamiento, of T¡ofilito, or so tender, for insomniac, El soldadoby Rafael Suárez.

With such a repertoire, it seems that we are facing the last of the products conceived "for the Yumas", with ínflulas and all of the great market. But stop. The music takes care very quickly to break the curse that the hundreds of traditional trova discs (or will they be thousands?) Have released, published here or there, under the label of world music (or related). Because one thing is to compile in a two by three themes reapproved, for immense type Lágrimas negras, and another very different one to take the job of digging carefully in the immense catalog of the trova to revere and return to shine (with the goodness of a polisher), to other songs also enormously beautiful. For that, the key is the interpretation of the Words Trio, the precise sound of Nubia's guitar, the filling of the unique voices of Vania and Liane (so subtle and respectful of silence: as if each phrasing took a deep breath before) and , of course, the orchestrations and arrangements designed for the album.

The list of musicians and music that accompany Palabras here is another sign of the collective spirit and the fraternity that prevails in the Santa Cruz de la Trova of recent years. Are they Trovarroco Maikel Elizarde (three) and Rachid López (guitar), the double bass of Meylín Chaviano, the laúd of Teresa Wong and the percussion of Axel Yera and Alexis "Pututi" Arce (prominent name in the Cuban timba of the nineties).

Another clapping detail,  vintage which only enlarges this record recorded for four days and its nights at Eusebio Delfín de Cienfuegos studios, is the technique used for recording. Headed by producer Jim Laurel, the austere Muxía Music team has as its philosophy the high definition record of acoustic music, in the style of the fifties and sixties: unique shots, musicians playing together in a comfortable lounge, with some alcohol (I guess) and extravagant microphones.

Before finishing, an important detail. In the latest edition of the Cubadisco awards, Lo que dice mi cantar He won the highest award in the Song category. And that has merit, because it is a work made in the interior, of authors who defend their music, without great support. If the Cubadisco Prize, in short, served for once to seek the interest of a national seal to license and irrigate throughout Cuba this music, then a little more justice will have been done.

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