Flute and violin duo co-lead lead this ensemble of traditional cuban music.
A refreshing change of pace from what many Americans think of as Latin music, Herencia is an immediately appealing listen. The duo of flutist Gerardo Pena and violinist Gerardo Aguillon front a big band that plays a slightly kitschy but endearing blend of Latin pop and easy listening. The arrangements on Herencia feature an extremely prominent string section in exactly the same fashion that Esquivel and other pioneers of south-of-the-border fusion used orchestras: as a connection to familiar American musical forms to help demystify the unfamiliar Latin rhythms. Given that the average American music fan is far more familiar with Latin music forms of many different types than had been true at the dawn of the stereo age, Herencia sounds oddly old-fashioned to the contemporary listener, but in an appealing, non-ironic way. Chaonda are named for an Afro-Cuban form partially based on the folk music of Guinea, and there's a lightness of spirit on Herencia that it shares with much West African music, in the fleet acoustic guitar patterns and occasionally chant-like call-and-response vocals.
Herencia - album credits
Vocals, Group Member
Flute, Musical Direction, Mezcla, Group Member, Recording
Bass (Acoustic), Group Member
Percussion, Guira, Tamboura, Group Member, Conga
Violin, Group Member, Musical Direction, Brass Arrangement