Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Diggin' Havana D' Primera

While I continue to learn about the roots of Salsa and study the many styles of the dance I am coming across wonderful bands and great music.

I love live music and I love Salsa because the bands are actually bands. Many of them averaging 12 or more musicians (many of whom play more than one instrument) and there is nothing like the sound of a live band, especially ones that put it down like these bands.

The dancer in me has fallen in love with Alexander Abreu y Havana d'Primera. The first time I heard this song on the dance floor I was hooked:

It satisfied the Salsa craving by giving me a great beat as well as fed the jazz and live band junkie in me. This Cuban orquestra consists of 14 members and the lead singer/trumpeter puts down some smooth sounds with his voice as well as his trumpet. They have performed for the past few years consistently around Europe and South America.

Anyone who can lay it down like this live, is worth the price of admission in my world. I haven't heard a person play a trumpet like this in a long time:

This song is on the same album as the one mentioned above and it is my absolute favorite timba/salsa song. The first time I played the CD in my car and this song played...well, I was a Havana D'Primera fan for LIFE! It is the smoothest, jazziest, piece of timba that have ever graced my ears. I am saving this song to dance with someone who deserves it. Enough teasing you, enjoy it for yourself:

I really like their mellow stuff but they can also make you move. Notice the crowd dancing? LOVE IT!!!

I can not wait to see them live. It is rumored they are coming out with a new album that will drop in a few months. What do you think? Do they make you move?

Until Next Time,
Peace & Blessings...

Monday, January 17, 2011

Random Thunderstorms...Cabin Fever!

I was snowed/iced in for five days and it drove me crazy. I was almost willing to brave the icy roads to go see some friends and family. Living alone and being on the other side of the city sucked last week! Ugh!

On a lighter note, I got caught in the snow storm Sunday night having a movie night with friends. People were the nicest I have ever seen them in this city. It gave my nervous drive home of an hour a half some peace.

I have a plan in place to conquer debt and build wealth this year. I have worked on recovering from the bad marriage and have done pretty well. A few major bumps last year put me in a hole but this year I will fully recover.

I refuse to marry or get into a serious relationship with anyone else who has bad credit and can not manager their personal finances. Call it what you want but marriage and life-partnership is also a business contract. I am too old to rebound from another man who can not manage his finances. Ironically, I know a few men who feel the same.

I have a few great vacations planned for this year. I can not wait to keep seeing the world. My cousin may not accompany me on a few but I have gained another traveling companion.

I'm planning my first trip to the west coast and going to visit a friend in Vegas! Excited....what happens in Vegas...

My house received some much needed TLC during the ice storm. I was home so much my fur baby started to ignore me.

I have not hit the dance floor hardwoods at all this year. What is wrong with me?

Until Next Time,
Peace & Blessings...

Friday, January 7, 2011

Remembering Oscar-Nominated Pete Postlethwaite 1946-2011

One of my favorite movies of all time is The Usual Suspects. That is saying a lot because having a Film & Video degree I have watched a ton of film. This movie grabs you form the beginning, keeps you in it until the very end and makes you smile at the twisted ending. It delivers one of the most memorable last liners of all time and does it all with an all star cast, many of whom are still honing their craft in the acting world.

Pete Postlethwaite played the lawyer, Kobayashi, coming to tell the bad boys what a terrible mistake they made and how they pissed off his boss. He was a great actor and this is a great movie. Mr. Postlethwaite recently lost his long battle with cancer and died at the age of 64.

Once described by the film director Steven Spielberg as "probably the best actor in the world today." He worked with Spielberg on two films - The Lost World: Jurrassic Park and Amistad.

But this film, is/was an instant classic.

Monday, January 3, 2011

My Sweet, Sweet Dance Hangover

I mentioned my first performance with my Salsa group last year and how we were debuting a new routine at the 3-day Cuban Party in December. There was some gooooddddd dancing at that party!!!!!

I have NEVER experienced a party like that but I guarantee I will do my best to make my next event just as good. I met some new DJs that had some people literally dancing out their shoes, hats and bra straps. One of my Salseros changed his shirt and could almost wring the sweat out of it. Good times...good times!

I took some great classes, saw some old friends and made some new ones. There is a wonderful Latin DJ from New Mexico that I have on tap for an event later next year and I learned some great new moves, watch out hardwoods! But the best part of this past weekend was the performance. Last year I watched as these ladies performed and I thought how nice it would be to learn to dance like them. Little did I know I would receive an invite to join their group a few weeks later and be a part of their performance this year!

I am so proud to be a part of this wonderful group. These ladies are BAD and this performance was the absolute best performance I have ever had. It wasn't perfect but the energy and vibe during that performance was so good people were coming up to us for the rest of the weekend telling us how much they enjoyed watching us dance, how much energy we have on stage, what great chemistry we have in our group and how much they can tell we have fun being together. It is all true and something tells me it will only get better from here. We closed out the performances on the main night and the best compliment was the owner of the party coming up to us saying "THAT is how you close out the performances!" Video? Of course there is video ;-)


The last night of the party we danced with the Salsa singer from earlier this year. He is a wonderful man with a warm spirit and I must say he rocked that crowd. We were once again his backup dancers. The dancing to his singing was beyond belief. We lost him in the crowd and as I looked up he was singing with the mic in his left hand and dancing with a lady in his right! I hope that opportunity leads to bigger and better things for him. He so deserves it.

It was back to work the following Monday and I was nursing a dance hangover but man, was I happy! I am truly blessed and highly favored. I am surrounded by a network of people who care for me and want what's best for me. Finally, I am rejoicing in a place where I am comfortable in who I am and I am enjoying life. I have met so many wonderful diverse people and I have hobbies that keep a smile on my face, that are great for my health and well-being and I am happy. Let me repeat that, I AM HAPPY!!!!

I am truly overwhelmed in my life and I am so happy to stand in this spot, at this moment and let the tears of joy roll down as I recall this year. The great memories, laughs, love, friendship, family, travel. I am excited to see what comes next.

I hope you enjoyed your holidays...I really enjoyed mine.

Peace & Blessings...