All about the bongo

Bobby Sanabria tells the story of the bongo.

This archetypal Cuban instrument was developed in Oriente, eastern Cuba.

Understanding a little about it will explode your appreciation of Cuban music exponentially.

Want more?

Of course, you do!

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

P.S. Our unique programming is made possible by help from people like you. Learn how you … Read more

Going deeper into Changüí

Last week we dropped in on a Changüí party in Oriente (eastern Cuba.)

We witnessed a friendly and sincere dispute between a young rapper from Havana and a Changüisero.

Today we go back to the music and learn how Changüí lyrics are improvised and why there’s more to it than meets the eye.

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube… Read more

Changüí party

A scene from the movie “Cuba Feliz”

If you don’t speak Spanish and the subtitles aren’t working and you’d like to see what they are singing, you can click on the upper left hand corner of the video and be taken to YouTube to see a subtitled version. (But remember to come back!)

Seventy-six-year-old Cuban street musician Miguel Del Morales, … Read more

Rumba from “La Herrería de Sirique” (1966)

Conjunto Clave y Guaguancó

An excerpt from the documentary “La Herrería de Sirique” about blacksmith shop/performance space that flourished in Havana in the 1960s until it was closed down in 1968.

Born in 1939 in Caibarién, Cuba, the director of “La Herrería de Sirique” Héctor Veitía graduated from the University of Havana in Cuban studies and began his film career … Read more

Son from “La Herrería de Sirique” (1966)

A herrería is a blacksmith shop and “La Herrería de Sirique” is about a Havana blacksmith who loved music.

Blacksmith by day, musician and music lover Alfredo González Suazo — better known as Sirique — ran one of the most important spaces for Cuban music in 1960s Havana in his blacksmithing shop.

Before the shop and its music program closed … Read more