Alex Cuba, Koerner Hall – Fri Nov 9

Concert at beautiful Koerner Hall.

Seats priced from $30.

Alex Cuba is “adept at filling his music with colors, textures and temperatures of the different worlds he thrives in by using funky horns, tender acoustic guitars and thoughtful lyrics.” (Billboard) His trademark sugarcane-sweet melodies, pop-soul hooks, and rock chords subvert commonly held notions of what Cuban music is. A Latin Grammy winner and two-time Juno Award-winning artist, Mr. Cuba’s music is “like getting a coat of sunshine applied to your eardrums.” (Halifax Chronicle Herald)

CBC News Toronto’s Dwight Drummond and Anne-Marie Medwiake will host the concert with Mervon Mehta, Executive Director of Performing Arts at The Royal Conservatory.

Cuban-Canadian singer, songwriter, and multi-instumentalist Alex Cuba was stongly inspired by his father, a guitarist and music instructor who earned a Master’s degree in music at the age of 55. Later, he formed The Puentes Brothers with his brother and, citing influences that range from Kind of Blue by Miles Davis to The Beatles’s White Album, he looked beyond the rich heritage of his homeland to develop his own singular style.

Alex Cuba released his solo debut, Humo de tabaco, in 2006, and “Lo Mismo Que Yo,” featuring Ron Sexsmith, became a Top 20 BBC Radio 2 hit and received a Juno Award for Best World Music Album. Agua del pozo followed in 2007 on the artist’s own Caracol Records, earning Cuba another Juno and expanding his profile in the U.S., Japan, and the Netherlands through concert appearances and an iTunes Single of the Week. Two years later, he co-wrote nine tracks with Nelly Furtado and was featured on her Spanish language debut for Universal, Mi plan (My Plan), including her chart-topping “Manos Al Aire,” which later earned Alex Cuba a 2011 BMI Latin Award for his songwriting contributions to the track. However, it was Alex Cuba’s third album that brought him a new level of international renown. Released in 2009, Alex Cuba showcased the artist’s winning partnership with co-producer Joby Baker and contained his first English song, “If You Give Me Love.” In November 2010, Alex Cuba was awarded a Latin Grammy for Best New Artist in addition to a nomination for Best Male Pop Vocal Album. Alex Cuba was also acknowledged at the 53rd Annual Grammy Awards with a nomination in the Best Latin Pop Album category.

Combining rock, soul, pop, and Latin-funk on his fourth album, Ruido en el sistema (Static in the System), Cuba continues his journey as a critically acclaimed independent artist who has charted his own destiny across the world stage while earning a growing legion of devoted listeners. Featuring four English tracks, the new project showcases a combination of confidence and competence in the language of his adopted land. The progression, natural and organic, is emblematic of his 13 years living in Canada.

Armed with a Gibson ES355, Alex Cuba consistently challenges perceptions about what Latin music is, and who listens to it, by simply being himself.

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