Sambroso All Stars: 24 Kitchen St, Liverpool
The Sambroso All Stars paid tribute to Buena Vista Social Club at Kitchen St, and Gary Dougherty was there to enjoy the Son Cubano beats.
In the depths of a dismal British winter, Cuban ensemble The Sambroso All Stars returned to 24 Kitchen Street to bring some Latin heat.
In just short of a two hour set, the traditional seven piece band paid tribute to the iconic Buena Vista Social Club album from 1997.
For those less familiar with it, Buena Vista Social Club was born of adversity in Cuba when legendary guitarist Ry Cooder and World Music producer Nick Gold had travelled there to record some African musicians. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) these musicians couldn’t get visas and instead some local musicians from the pre-revolution era were persuaded to come out of retirement to perform.
What followed was a worldwide success and relaunched traditional Cuban styles such as son, bolero and danzón. The musicians became known as Los Superabuelos (the Super-Grandparents).
It is this legacy that the Sambroso All Stars were emulating. Lead singer Javier Camilo – who appeared to be dressed straight out of the 1950s – recalled listening to Los Superabuelos and felt privileged to be performing their material live.
The packed crowd at Kitchen Street felt equally privileged and danced and sang along to the favourites such as Chan Chan and De Camino a la Vereda.
After the Cuban revolution the desire to create a classless and colourblind society led to the suppression of cultural differences. With this the traditional Cuban musical forms were nearly lost. To see a crowd of 20-somethings through to 60-somethings enjoying these traditional sounds demonstrated that it is by embracing diversity and celebrating cultural differences that we truly achieve equality. This equality was further demonstrated when each of the band were given their chance to shine with their own solo.
In all one of the best atmospheres I’ve ever encountered at Kitchen Street and a musical tour de force.
Sambroso All Stars were: Javier Camilo (lead vocals), Kishon Khan (piano), Alejandro Téllez (double bass), Adonis Banderas (bongos), Daniel Camargo (tres guitar), Rene Savigne (congas), Rolando Domingo (trumpet).
They play another sold out gig at Band on The Wall, Manchester on 14th Feb.
Pictures by Gary Dougherty