The diva of the Buena Vista Social Club, the legendary singer Omara Portuondo, told EFE on Tuesday that all the pieces that was done for Cuba during Barack Obama’s mandate “has been taken away” and Joe Biden has done almost nothing for the island since he has been president.
Also often known as “the girlfriend of feeling,” she is blunt in the case of answering the query of how she perceives the neighboring country’s relations with the island and if this has affected the each day lifetime of her compatriots.
Portuondo (Havana, 1930) believes that “america doesn’t care about Cuba in any respect, so nothing has modified and all the pieces Obama did has been taken away. Biden has done almost nothing for Cuba.”
The crisis is due “to the blockade that america continues to unfairly impose on us,” although she acknowledges that “among the ideas in Cuba that now not work must change, but what harms us essentially the most is the blockade.”
Farewell in Europe
At 91 years old, she continues to be on tour and has just begun a farewell throughout Europe on the La Mar de Músicas Festival within the Spanish city of Cartagena. As she has announced, when she finishes the European tour she’s going to only perform in Cuba or in nearby countries.
She has many memories of her time in Buena Vista Social Club (BVSC), but for sure having been capable of be next to Francisco Repilado (Compay Segundo) is probably the most nice things for her, because “he was a pleasant and really normal person, as they are saying, he had a spark.”
Omara Portuondo anticipates farewell to stage with world tour
By probability Omara Portuondo and her band recorded in 1996 in certainly one of the halls of the legendary EGREM studios in Havana concurrently BVSC and, while singing “Veinte Años,” Ry Cooder decided to record the take that became a part of the record.
Omara often remembers in her interviews the hardships she suffered in her childhood, which she believes helped her to be who she is, an admired singer: “after all, there are a lot of artists on the earth who’ve experienced the identical thing, so I feel that it’s certainly one of life’s tests, one which teaches you.”
She got to be within the mythical Tropicana club about which she often tells many anecdotes. Omara had seen her sister Haydée rehearse there so often that she knew all of the steps, so in 1945 she was asked to fill a dancer’s spot that was up for grabs.
“There was an environment of labor and camaraderie. A very powerful artists on the earth have passed through there. I had the privilege of working with Nat King Cole, Tony Bennett and Benny More, and other Cuban artists like Bola de Nieve or Rita Montaner,” she recalls.
She says that the key of her longevity, along with the crackers with water and brown sugar she had within the Thirties, has been the swimming that she practiced fairly often.
She made her solo debut with the album Magia negra, from 1959, through which she mixes Cuban music and jazz. In 2009, with the album Gracias, she won the Latin Grammy within the category of Best Contemporary Tropical Album, and throughout the pandemic, her album Mariposas was released.
Among the many recent collaborations through which she participated stand out in 2017 “Échame a mi la culpa,” with Julio Iglesias; in 2020 “Lágrimas Negras,” with Raphael; in 2021 “Horizontes de Niebla,” with Rozalén; and in 2022 “Te Venero,” with C. Tangana on the album El Madrileño.