Cuba: Tributes for Compay Segundo Have Begun

Tributes to Cuba’s beloved Compay Segundo (1907-2003) began last weekend with a concert at the Theatre of the National Museum of Havana by the group that bears his name, which is directed by his son Salvador Repilado. More events in Cuba will be held the week of November 18, the late singer’s birthday. Cuba is also gearing up for next year, when the legendary Cuban troubadour will be honored at festivals and concerts celebrating 105 years since his birth.

Events include the 14th “Habanos” International Festival in February, the Cubadisco Festival in May, and the Leo Brouwer Chamber Music Festival in October 2012. There will also be a re-edition of the record Siempre Compay.

Last week’s event was meant as a gathering to remember songs of the guitarist and composer, who was born in the eastern city of Santiago de Cuba, as well as other composers related to the long artistic trajectory of the creator of the popular tune “Chan Chan.”

Compay Segundo—whose real name was Máximo Francisco Repilado Muñoz—was known in Cuba as “El Patriarca del Son” [The Patriarch of Son]. He achieved international fame when he was over 80 years old, after participating in the Buena Vista Social Club Project, which brought together a group of Cuban traditional music performers in 1997.

For original article (in Spanish), see

Listen to Compay Segundo’s “Chan Chan” here:

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