Ritmos Cubafricanos began as an informal project initiated by the Academy of Cuban Folklore and Dance in Seattle, WA. Co-director José Alfredo Carrión Napoles is the former principal dancer & professor of Ballet Folklórico Cutumba de Santiago. For over 25 years, José has been researching, collecting, conserving, revitalizing & presenting the folkloric manifestations of Afro-Franco-Haitian-Cuban origin found primarily in Cuba's Eastern (Oriente) provinces.
When teaching abroad, José found it difficult to find musicians versed in the lesser-known rhythms heard primarily in the Oriental regions of Cuba. Therefore, we decided to invite into the studio a special group of friends & family - all musicians and singers of Cutumba - to help us record & preserve some of this music in its traditional form. Our original idea was to use these recordings as an accompaniment for José's folkloric dance classes when live percussion was not possible. After listening to them, we realized that they would also serve as excellent study guides for students of both folkloric percussion and dance. And, for those who want to just listen and enjoy... aché!
Recorded in Santiago de Cuba, 2005