Our Latin Thing – Nuestra Cosa

A film by Leon Gast (1972)

An excerpt of the review of the DVD re-issue (out of print) from the New York Times:

“EARLY in the salsa documentary “Our Latin Thing (Nuestra Cosa),” a 40th anniversary version of which will be released Tuesday, the master percussionist Ray Barretto is asked what he wants the movie to accomplish. He responds that … Read more

Documentary – “Mr. Bongo: I’m going to live until I die”

Jack Costanzo (1919-2018)

Jack Costanzo started out as a dancer but self-education which included three trips to Havana in the 1940s made him a bongero (bongo master) and he was in instant demand both with jazz and Latin orchestras.

His first exposure to the instrument came when he was 14 years old at a ballroom dance concert in his home … Read more

Harvard in Cuba

You’ve got to hand it to Harvard. They’ve got money and in this case they knew how to spend it.

This short video is an excellent musical and visual survey of some of the best that the western part of Cuba has to offer music lovers.

Cuban saxophonist, percussionist and composer Yosvany Terry directs the jazz bands at Harvard where … Read more

A Night in Havana Dizzy Gillespie in Cuba

In 1985, on his second trip to Havana, Dizzy Gillespie was accompanied by a documentary film crew.

The resulting film “A Night in Havana: Dizzy Gillespie in Cuba” captures Dizzy’s spirit like few other films.

The film includes beautifully shot concert footage of his performance at Havana’s Fifth International Jazz Festival, his adventures touring Havana and his reflections on Afro-Cuban … Read more

David and Gilberto in Havana

“Keep a green tree in your heart and perhaps a singing bird will come.” – Chinese proverb

Jazz is an art of innovation, but it’s equally an art of memory, history, and tradition.  

Gilberto and David know what it was like when there was a free flow of music and musicians between Cuba and the United States and what a … Read more