13 Articles in this blog

"Striking a note" is a blog on music made in Cuba, written by the Havanan journalist, poet and editor Marcel Lueiro. It has information about Cuban musicians, the different types of music played in the Island, and also about the best places in Havana and other provinces where you can dance and listen to good live music.

"Striking a note" is my invitation to a musical tour during your trip, so you can become a fan and connoisseur of Cuban music.

Our Island is very musical. Since the very moment we are born, music weaves the "soundtrack" of our lives on the radio, in taxis, through our grandmas' voices or from the cries of street vendours.

We have a bit of everything. Cuba is a small sound universe stemming from its position in the Caribbean as a meeting, exchange and crossbreeding point.

That is what "Striking a note" is all about. I would like this blog to become part of your findings; a sort of musical compass you will carry with you so as not to get lost.

I will be introducing you to great musicians; we will talk about the history and diversity of the music in the Island; and, you will find updated information on the best places for dancing and listening to live music in Havana and throughout Cuba.

The gramophone just started to play.

This blog's recent article locations

Marcel Lueiro

Marcel Lueiro's Been There Done That

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Recent articles in Striking a note

  • 04 Apr 2017
  • 0 Comments
  • Travel Advice
  • Marcel Lueiro
Little known Cuba

Basic guide to the DNA of salsa, mambo and other Cuban music genres

What is Cuba’s national dance? What are the sources of mambo and salsa? Where does Cuba’s musical richness come from? In this post we’ll answer these and other questions. We’ll talk about the origins of music in Cuba and of the generic cores from which most of its rhythms originate; rumba, mambo, salsa and others. I’ll now start playing a few tracks on my gramophone so that they shed light into Cuba’ s music story and so that you get to know and fully enjoy the island’s wide variety of sounds.
  • 21 Mar 2017
  • 0 Comments
  • Travel Advice
  • Marcel Lueiro
Off the beaten track

Casa de la Trova: Sancti Spiritus's romantic and bohemian side

Evenings at Casa de la Trova (Trova House – trova or la trova, meaning troubadour music) in the city of Sancti Spiritus are bohemian and energising. Under the stars, in the interior patio of an 18th century colonial house, you’ll be able to taste first-hand the different flavours of Sancti Spiritus’s traditional music. It’s an excellent opportunity for you to meet the people from this city in central Cuba, through the sounds that define its five-century-old culture.
  • 17 Nov 2016
  • 0 Comments
  • Travel Advice
  • Marcel Lueiro
Havana Nights

Jamming sessions with Beatles music at the Submarino Amarillo

“Striking a note” visits Submarino Amarillo, a friendly and welcoming venue in Havana’s Vedado vicinity, where you can listen to some of The Beatles’s greatest hits live, performed by local cover bands. Cuban rock bands like Los Kents, Miel con Limón and Los Tackson frequently come here to play some Beatles classics as well as retro hits from other 60s and 70s popular rock bands, for an all-age nostalgic audience.
  • 11 Oct 2016
  • 0 Comments
  • Travel Advice
  • Marcel Lueiro
Off the beaten track

In Santa Clara don't miss the El Mejunje: Cuba's leading bohemian haunt

El Mejunje is a cultural centre in the Cuban city of Santa Clara, hailed for its bohemian atmosphere and openness to diversity. It hosts the Thursday night performances of troubadours Roly Berrio, Leonardo Garcia, Yordan Romero, Yaima Orozco, Yordan Romero, Raul Marchena y Alain Garrido. They are all members of a movement called La Trovuntivitis, whose sole aim is keeping the Nueva Trova's creative and bold spirit alive. In this post I will enlighten you on where to go and what to do on Thursday nights, if you happen to be around Santa Clara.
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