Arts + Culture

Music's Greatest Hits

by Kara Zuaro

HAVANA GOOD TIME
New York City, July 1, 1998

The Moment: Buena Vista Social Club, a group of legendary Cuban musicians whose international fame has been stifled by Cold War politics, makes its belated United States debut at a sold-out Carnegie Hall show. Director Wim Wenders captures the moment on film for his documentary on the musicians, to be released the following year. The members of the band—already in their seventies, eighties, and nineties by the time guitarist Ry Cooder assembled them to record an eponymous record in 1997—are known in their native Cuba as los superabuelos (the super-grandfathers), but on this night, the years melt away as they revive the music of their 1950s heyday.

Where to go now: Several of the Club's members have passed away, but if you can assemble the proper paperwork to travel to Cuba, you'll still find potent mojitos and great Latin vibes at Casa de la Trova in Santiago, where the band members used to play.

Casa de la Trova
Calle Heredia 526589
Santiago de Cuba
Tel: (53) 22 62 3943

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