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Juan de Dios Alfonso

No background of Cuban music is total without a reference to Juan de Dios Alfonso as well as the dance music group he started called La Flor de Cuba, particularly if it really is a visible demonstration including photographs of the rusty, dusty outfit energetic from the middle-19th hundred years until Alfonso’s loss of life in 1877. La Flor de Cuba was one of the biggest black organizations in the design referred to as orquesta tipica, the established list comprising every dance varieties of the period, are the contredance, minuet, rigodone, guarache, and lancero. Alfonso’s exclusive instrumentation paired specific axes such as for example clarinet and violin and in addition included the trombone and quality Cuban percussion. Beyond Cuban music background, Alfonso and his clothing inhabit several niche categories of particular importance. Cynics who accuse bandleaders of playing god without doubt relish the lifetime of a bandleader whose name itself contains the term “god.” Certainly of even more importance may be the fact an 1869 gig by La Flor de Cuba on the Villanueva Theater in Havana must decrease as the most severe gig any group provides ever had, producing the Deep Crimson inferno on the Montreux Jazz Festival look like a picnic in the united states. The Havana theatre was in fact attacked with a Spanish battalion during among the sets; it had been, after all, a period when Cubans had been fighting because of their independence in the Spanish mother dispatch. To make issues worse, the battalion contains volunteers who made a decision to make especially gruesome workout from the unarmed market. Alfonso’s compositions for dancers prevent such heavy topics; titles consist of “Ay! Manuelita” and “La Bella Maria.”

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