Illustration: Mayo Bous / Magazine AM: PM.
Illustration: Mayo Bous / Magazine AM: PM.

Literature Feat. Music: Things (fragment)

3 minutos / Roberto Carcassés

21.01.2019 / Others

The troubadour they most admired was called Domingo Ferrer. His songs were like made to measure for Ricardo and his friends. Polluted pure songs. Works of art that could only come from the head of a timeless genius, who sang like a doomed to a world in which everything was strange and close. Aphorisms Lessons of life and spirituality. The feeling that with the power of art you could change the world and improve people. All this mixed with merca, fory, rum and cigar, creating a bittersweet confusion of values and experiences.

Also, Domingo belongs to a family of troubadours; since childhood he has seen Sindo (Blanco) and Pedro (Moreno) and the other founders of Nueva Trova playing those rare and seductive songs at home. He grew hopeful for what the revolutionary process promised; I saw Fidel and Che as adventurous heroes of irreproachable conduct. At the same time, he was very critical in his songs with intolerance and retrograde and did not make the ball to the leaders. For him, his art was beyond time and men.

In one of his songs he named Fidel along with other world leaders as causes of what was being lived, and he was summoned by State Security to explain what he wanted to say because they did not understand well. For them only the leader in loas could be quoted:

-It's never been the name of the boss in a song of that type -the agent said.

"Well, they already have one," the troubadour replied.

Like a giant magnet, Domingo attracted them to his group. Ricardo on guitar, Guelmi on piano, Rayan on bass, and a drummer: Tomás Richard. Black, son of black, proud to be black, as he said. He came from a family with Jamaican and Haitian ancestry, of those who settled in the East of the country. Jazz was the greatest thing for him. I rejected the commercial and somehow felt that it was something banal. If he played with Domingo, he did it because it had become fashionable for jazz players to accompany troubadours; a bit imitating Sting and the band he formed when he began his solo career, and Sindo and the Afroísla group.

Twenty-one years later ... Domingo would die at fifty-two of a rise in pressure that would exhaust his heart, his big heart, and take away his life. Your only life A frail body that had been punished with so many nights of pleasure and surrender. Both guitar and both trovar.

But now the boys are in front of a rent where he is staying with his girlfriend, a small room in Vedado with a mattress, a narrow kitchen full of dirty dishes and a very small bathroom.

Roberto Carcassés Colón, Havana, 1972. Total musician. Pianist, composer, and director of several mythical bands of Cuban popular music. Founder and soul of the Interactive project. This fragment belongs to his unpublished novel THE THINGS.

Roberto Carcassés

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