Track listing: Lamento Cubano, Pensando en Ti, Baila Mi Alma, Casa de Luz, No Hay Problema, Solución, Vida en Venecia, Ocho Vientos, Un Amor Extraño, Algún Día, Lamento Cubano (Versión Acústica)
Lamento Cubano is the first Spanish-language, but fifth overall full-length recording, released by guitarist/vocalist Lourdes Pita. The album is a love letter of sorts dedicated to Lourdes' Cuban heritage. Her mother is the acclaimed, exiled Cuban poet Juana Rosa Pita, who taught Lourdes to sing and play guitar using both English and Spanish folk songs as a curriculum.
Throughout the course of her career, Pita has received substantial worldwide airplay. Her song "Now is the Time" appeared on a Canadian compilation entitled Peace Songs For a Better World Volume II. And the acoustic version of Lamento Cubano's title track appears in an independent film about the Cuban artist Rafael Soriano.
"Lamento Cubano" itself is a cover of the Eliseo Genet traditional song first recorded in the 50s by legendary singer/actress Toña la Negra. The album features both a stunning solo acoustic version and leads off with a filled-out, more traditionally Cuban-styled instrumentation interpretation. Picking up the tempo, Lourdes' flamenco-influenced guitar playing is featured on "Solución."
With Lourdes spending most of her career singing in English, her path to translating, writing and recording an entire Spanish language album brings to mind the 1987 release of Linda Ronstadt's Canciones de Mi Padre, and album in which Ronstadt looked back on her own family's heritage and brought it to a generation and fanbase perhaps not too familiar with the language or styles she recorded. The familial influence is certain a common theme, coming through strongly on Lamento Cubano. "Solución" exists as a sort of dedication to Lourdes' grandmother. The lyrics of "Vida en Venecia" are from one of her mother's books.
In Lamento Cubano you cannot help but feel history, struggle and the impact that her family's exile had on their lives. But the resulting album is a work of honor. Of hope. "No Hay Problema" offers encouragement amidst strife. With Lamento Cubano, Lourdes Pita presents en Español a beautiful tribute not only to her family but those who've dealt with similar histories.
Follow Lourdes Pita and download a free track on her site, lourdespita.com.