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Music In Cuba by Alejo Carpentier

MUSIC IN CUBA is a first-rate, accurately written account of a subject that is at once fascinating as well as mysterious. Written by Alejo Carpentier, translated by Alan West-Duran, edited and with an Introduction by Timothy Brennan. For lovers of Cuban music, this is one of the finest reference books to date on Cuban music, and its clear and lucid prose takes the reader on a highly educational and entertaining journey.

This reference work is the foundation for all other studies, and until 2001 was unavailable in English translation. Originally published in 1946, it remains fascinating reading material.

Alejo Carpentier (1904 -1980) is considered by many critics to be Cubas most important intellectual figure of the twentieth century for in addition to becoming an internationally well-known novelist he was also classically trained as a pianist and as a musicologist. Carpentier was born at Havana Cuba. A master of the Latin American novel Carpentier is also credited with the literary innovation which became known as magical realism. A tireless and active innovator Carpentier led an interesting life and collaborated with composers such as Igor Stravinsky Darius Milhaud among others.

In MUSIC IN CUBA Carpentier gives the reader an in-depth sensitive look the importance of Cuban music and its popular rural Spanish folk music and Afro-Cuban music. All aspects are covered in detail.

Timothy Brennan gives the reader an amazing look at Carpentier in his introduction notes bibliography and index.

The first 2 chapters of the book examine in detail the sixteenth century and the seventeenth century followed by a chapter on Esteban Salas. The chapter titled "Cuban Bufos" is an intriguing look at music samples and on page 222 are found two examples of sheet music which cover this topic. For those interested especially in the "son" sound in Cuban music as a musical genre it is discussed on pages 86225227229231232247278 compared to the form of "contradanza" on page 228 and a discussion of its structure is found on page 230. The chapters "Introduction to the Contradanza" and "Blacks in Cuba" are concise masterpieces of social observation and analysis.

Readers and those interested in Cuban musical history will find MUSIC IN CUBA entertaining well-written and an excellent reference to have in the home library. This is one book every jazz listener will want to own and it is a book that will appeal to anybody interested in the creative music of Cuba and Cuba's unique heritage of Spanish and Afro-Cuban music. An excellent historical document entertaining enjoyable and a reliable resource on Cuban music.'MUSIC IN CUBA is a first-rate, accurately written account of a subject that is at once fascinating as well as mysterious. Written by Alejo Carpentier, translated by Alan West-Duran, edited and with an Introduction by Timothy Brennan. For lovers of Cuban music, this is one of the finest reference books to date on Cuban music, and its clear and lucid prose takes the reader on a highly educational and entertaining journey.

Additional Info

  • Book Title: Music In Cuba
  • Author: Alejo Carpentier
  • Publisher: University of Minnesota Press
  • Year Published: 2001
  • Book Type:: Non-Fiction
  • ISBN: 816632294
  • Rating: Five Stars
  • Number of Pages: 321
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