Author: Alfredo Prieto

The End of a Cuban Summer

They say that summers in Cuba are everything but mild. Prior to the beginning of this summer that is just ending, an announcement was made that electricity consumption was outpacing projections, which acted to ignite concerns about the return of residential blackouts.

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Juanes Cuba Concert Stirs Miami Pot

Upon Juanes’ return to Miami, the weight of tradition began to bear down on the artist. The Colombian-born singer was immediately accused of acting in complicity with the socialist regime and “changing his black shirt for a red one” – obviously another over-the-top allegation. In addition, he was threatened with a boycott and the destruction of his discography, an experience that others who have dared to cross the circle of ashes have suffered.

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The Billboard Wars

These actions, plus others produced by that peculiar atmosphere, made up what at the time was called “the billboard war”, a conflagration started by the Bush administration and just ended by Obama. “We believe that the electronic ticker was really not effective as a means of delivering information to the Cuban people”, said Ian Kelly, a State Department spokesman.

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Orishas Avoid Malls

Luis Perez Hernandez is a babalawo priest of the Afro-Cuban Santeria religion who was arrested last August in his suburban home in Westchester (outside of New York City) for cruelty to animals. This is not an atypical case, but another act of harassment that babalawo priests have suffered in the USA.

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The Other Shore

His songs are like the iron fist in the velvet glove, as they hammer your reality with humor. Frank Delgado constructs an ideo-esthetic discourse unparalleled on the contemporary Cuban music scene. It’s a shame he is hardly heard on Cuban airwaves.

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Evocation of an enigma

I almost invariably associate the unmistakable name of German Genaro Cipriano Gomez Valdes Castillo, better known in the history of cinema as “Tin Tan” with certain Havana neighborhood cinemas that no longer exist. These were where children laughed, teens groped and old people snored.

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Cuban Mothers

In today’s Cuba, mothers have been the unquestionable navigators of the crisis. In the kitchen and at the table, they have performed the miracle of bread and fish come true, very often while also attending to their social and work obligations.

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