A tribute to legendary Cuban singer Benny Moré scheduled for next week at the América Theater in Havana will gather artists from all parts of the Spanish-speaking world. The tribute marks what would have been Moré’s 90th birthday. He was born in 1919 in Santa Isabel de las Lajas in the former province of Las Villas in central Cuba, and died at the age of 43 of cirrhosis in 1963. The tribute is organized around the “Conciertos Boleros de Oro,” scheduled this yearfor July 3-5 in substitution of the traditional bolero festival.
The singer and composer, known as “el Bárbaro del Ritmo,” mastered all genres of Cuban music, but was particularly known for his interpretations of son montuno and bolero. Among his greatest hits are “Cómo fue”, “Bonito y sabroso”, “Santa Isabel de las Lajas”, “Qué bueno baila usted”, “Cienfuegos”, “Se te cayó el tabaco” and “Locas por el mambo.” A movie about his life, El Benny (2006), includes music by Cuban stars Los Van Van, Chucho Valdés and Orishas. Moré is a central character in Cuban writer Daína Chaviano’s 2006 novel La isla de los amores infinitos (Grijalbo), which includes a chapter (“Hoy como ayer”), considered to be “one of the best interpretations of Cuba’s ‘Sonero Mayor’.”