That Time I Jammed With The Cubans….
It was Christmas Eve and Sandra, Jon and I were enjoying the festive ambiance of Trinidad, Cuba — a remarkably colourful and beautiful city on the south coast of the main island. When we heard the son clave coming from up the cobbled street, we ventured forth. Dusk was just settling in, the image of the birds previous to this post was taken moments earlier, and the music was beginning to pulse from inside and out. Sitting, watching and eventually grooving to this quintet (one is off camera right) I was suddenly given an instrument to join in — a very large horse’s jawbone. We got a couple songs in — adding a whack here and a thump there I hit the beats in time and felt like a natural on the ‘bone.
That’s me on the left, enjoying every moment and I was thrilled for the experience (thanks, Sandra, for snapping the shot in such low light). Back in Canada I played in an Afro-Cuban / Brazilian percussion ensemble called Sambata for a number of years. We played festivals, parades, private events, clubs and dance parties throughout the lower mainland – and we rocked! It’s been some time since I played with the band, but the music is still within me, everyday. I am proud to say I can spot a son from a rumba and could probably get back up to speed on the breakneck batucada style Brazilian samba in a few sweaty hours. Maybe it’s time to reconnect with the music once again…this was a great tease.
Trinidad, Cuba, 2011.