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Lourdes Pita releases new single 'Lamento Cubano'

“Lamento Cubano” is taken from Lourdes Pita’s album of the same name and

is the only cover song on this all-Spanish collection. Pita has said,

“it really sums up the pain so many families like mine went through when

they were forced to flee their homeland.” The homeland she refers to is

Cuba, and Pita’s sister, Maria, was born in Havana, Cuba in 1961, during

a tumultuous time for that country. Her father, Mario Pita, was involved

in the resistance movement. Pita’s mother, Juana Rosa Pita, is an

acclaimed Cuban poet, who taught Lourdes Pita how to play and sing.

Clearly, Pita has a strong connection to Cuba.


STREAMING:


VIDEO (with English translation):

If you don’t speak Spanish, there is an English translation of the

song’s lyrics on YouTube (). However, you can also surmise from the tone

of Pita’s singing and the overall mournful vibe of the recording that

this is a sad song. It mourns the suffering of the Cuban people.

Lyrically, it contrasts that nation’s geographical beauty with the

ugliness of people in pain. For instance, one line wonders how tears can

spoil the perfectly blue skies. Nature is no match for man’s inhumanity

to man, though. Beauty just isn’t so beautiful when people are

suffering.


The song is taken at a slow pace, as most sad songs usually go. It

begins with a tandem acoustic guitar/acoustic piano intro, before guitar

sets the rhythm and piano intones moodily, a little like setting the

scene during a Film Noir. Pita’s voice comes in sweet and soft, but sad,

as she sings about the Cuban people. It’s not a specifically political

song, where it’s pointed at any particular government (at least not

lyrically). It could be referencing the government before communism took

over, which Pita knows all about, but it could possibly be directed at

the communist government now. No matter the governmental system –

associated with nearly any era, any locale – it always seems to be the

people that suffer most. One definition of politics is that it is a

power struggle. Competing parties struggle for control, and the people

end up being collateral damage in this struggle, much of the time.


At one point, Pita nearly speaks the words to this song. One imagines

this approach was inspired by the way her mother recites poetry. It’s

unsurprising this daughter of a poet is a songwriter (although not the

writer if this particular song) because the best songs can be compared

to poetry that’s put to music. This recording sounds like a song out of

time, in that it could just as easily be a recording from the ‘40s or

‘50s. It is simple, straightforward, and beautiful. There are no modern

elements incorporated. It doesn’t feature hip-hop beats or electronic

touches, for instance. Instead, it utilizes acoustic instruments,

backing vocals and Pita’s honeyed voice up front.


ONLINE:


Even without a lyrical translation, though, this recording is easy to

love. It’s lovely in its simplicity. It has a warm, comforting quality

to it. It may make you want to see some of Cuba’s natural highlights, in

fact. It is as much a love song to that land as it is a song about its

hurting people. If it’s possible for sadness to sound beautiful, this is

a prime example of what such an odd juxtaposition sounds like.

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