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Album Review

Veteran Cuban pianist Bebo Valdés, who has lived in Sweden since the '60s, is still a major player at the age of 88. On Bebo, he mostly plays ancient and traditional themes, many dating back to the 1800s. The repertoire, which predates ragtime and the development of many Latin rhythms, sometimes sounds like a mix between ragtime and the more melodic side of classical music. Valdés adds a gentle joy to the performances, improvising while keeping the themes close by during his first ever solo piano recording. While "Marta" was a famous theme in its time and Ernesto Lecuona was a well-known composer, there is much to discover during this consistently delightful and charming set.


Born: 1918 in Quivican, Cuba

Genre: Latino

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '90s, '00s

Legendary Cuban pianist Bebo Valdés and Gypsy singer songwriter Diego Jimenez Salazar (aka El Cigala) have seen dizzying success as solo artists, so it comes as no surprise that their genre-spanning collaboration Lagrimas Negras is the stuff that legends are made of. A heady blend of flamenco and Afro-Cuban history, the double platinum Lagrimas...
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Bebo, Bebo Valdés
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