Buena Vista Social Club: Local Meets Global and Lives Happily Ever After

Sage Publications
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Cultural Geographies, 2003, 10 (4), pp. 498 - 503
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Wim Wenders Buena Vista Social Club may be, as one critic called it, `a loving portrait of a master class in Cuban music. But it is many other things as well.1 Geography as much as history has bonded the destinies of Cuba and the United States in ways that the past forty years of Cold War tensions reinforced. Political animus may have turned the mere 90 miles a days unhurried cruising separating the Florida peninsula and the island of Cuba into a Caribbean-style Berlin Wall. Yet todays cultural crosswinds imply no such obstacles. The music and lyrics of Cuban composers of La Nueva Trova like Silvio Rodriguez and Pablo Milanes, bore the stamp of their Northamerican contemporaries, especially Dylan. US Hispano/Latino music now resonates with the rhythms of Cubas son, rumba and guaracha.
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