Sierra Maestra : History lands at Lula this Wednesday March 5th 2014

This piece is by writer Joyce Corbett-Humbert ( The Live music report) We wanted to share it with you !

Sierra Maestra is coming to Toronto! Wednesday, March 5th at Lula Lounge. Who are they? If you already know them and you live in the GTA you probably already have your tickets. If you don’t or if you have heard of them but don’t really know them, let me fill you in. Sierra Maestra is famous for playing the quintessential Cuban music known as “son”, the predecessor of salsa and probably the first Europeanized Cuban music in which the clave was played. Sierra Maestra’s aim is to maintain the heartbeat of this music on the world stage. Although son may not be the music most young people listen to in Cuba today, it is still very much alive in its birthplace of Oriente (Eastern Cuba) and the “Sierra Maestra” mountains where this style of music was born.

Sierra Maestra was formed in 1976 in Havana, decades before The Buena Vista Social Club (1996), by Juan de Marcos Gonzalez who later formed the Afro-Cuban All-Stars.Jésus Alemany, who went on to form the group Cubanismo, was also a prominent member. A household name in Cuba, Sierra Maestra has about 14 albums to their credit. They created the soundtrack to a Cuban TV series “Las Impuras” and their song “A LosRumberos de Belen” was used by Robert Redford for the soundtrack of “The MilagroBeanfield War”. They also appear in the French movie “Salsa” released in 2000 and directed by Luis Buñuel’s daughter-in-law, Joyce Buñuel.

Sierra Maestra’s instrumentation is typical of the classic son orchestras of the 1920s and 30s: tres, guitar, trumpet, voice, bass, bongos, guiro, congas and maracas. Their repertoireis filled with classics from artists such as Arsenio Rodriguez and Ignacio Piñero plus Sierra Maestra originals. If you like “old-school” Cuban music you will love SierraMaestra.

As is typical for Cuban shows in Toronto, this promises to be an exciting night with some nice extras, like a performance by Gera, a Cuban dancer newly-arrived in Toronto.  Gera and Kika will be performing a casino and Gera will also perform a Columbia . Master dancer and santero Antonio Ramirez will bring an Orisha to the the room and  DJ Johannus will play before , in between and after show .

Best to get there on time if you don’t want to miss anything!

Doors open at 7:30, show starts at 8:30.

Joyce Corbett-Humbert

Getting to see a group like this in a small space like Lula Lounge is quite amazing, this is the type of audience they can attract in Havana.

Saturday March 15 2014 SALSA KLIMAX party ! at Epic lounge 1355 St Clair Ave W

Start off your spring with some beautiful dancing ! With 2 Dj’s , dance performances and  special treats , Salsa Klimax is always an amazing party . Saturday March 15 2014  at 1355 Saint Clair Ave West and entrance only $10 ! before 11pm ..$13 afterwards

* Salsa Klimax Timba & Kizomba megaparty *

*LATEST NEWS!!! Due to unforeseeable circumstances the venue was changed to EPIC LOUNGE, just a few doors down the street at 1355 St. Clair Ave. West!

* DOORS OPEN @ 10pm

Sounds by:
*CUBAN: Salsa, Timba, Cubaton by DJ Yumaniche
*AFRO+CARIBBEAN: Kizomba, Zouk, Semba, Afro-House and Kuduro by DJ L’AS

*Free Kizomba/Semba Lesson by AfroLatino at 10:20pm

*Performance by AfroLatino ‘s Semi-Pro Team!!! Brand new salsa choreography! 11pm

*$10 in advance and before 11pm, $13 at the door after 11pm

Salsa Klimax event is on facebook please JOIN

Meet Cuban baseball player Antonio Pacheco Masso – This Sunday March 2 2014 lunch at Mambo Lounge !

Meet one of the greatest baseball players in the world! ANTONIO PACHECO MASSO (Multiple Olympic, Pan American Games, and World Baseball Championships Gold Medal)
Details  This Sunday, March 2nd @ 12:00pm At “MAMBO LOUNGE RESTAURANT” Located at: 120 Danforth Ave. Toronto, Ontario, M4K 1N1 Phone: (416) 778-7004
All players, Parents, Friends and any family members are welcome.
Price for lunch, entertainment and wine included : $40 per person over 18 years – $20 per person under 18 years old

Saturday March 1 2014 Havana Nights party ! Brand new location

C. U. Dance Productions present…. This Saturday March 1 2014 at 366 Queen street East  “Atelier Bistro Lounge”

Havana Nights!!!

It’s back!!! Toronto’s favourite latin party, Havana Nights, returns at the beautiful, renovated, trendy Queen East Atelier Bistro Lounge with your favourite latin DJ BERNAL spinning all night!

Important updates for this coming Saturday night’s party :

Location location location! The address of the party is at Atelier Bistro Lounge, 366 Queen Street EAST (NOT KING WEST!), just east of Parliament on the North Side of the street. Street and lot parking on the same block, for TTC, go to Queen station on Yonge and take Queen streetcar east to Parliament.

Dinner reservations are available before the party by calling (416) 901-7609 or online at, free admission for those coming for dinner. Doors will be at 10PM, $10 cover.

Havana Nights is not only about MUSIC but also DANCE! We will have a complimentary SUELTA class at 10PM and VERY special live rumba (columbia) performance, direct from CUBA!

Also This will be a pre- Party for the SIERRA MAESTRA concert ..There will be a ticket giveaway to a lucky winner .

Sierra Maestra is a mountain range in the area where the  Cuban Son music was invented.  The band Sierra Maestra aims to bring the 1920’s style of “son” to life wherever they play. Small World Music brings the band to Lula Lounge on Wednesday Mar 5, 2014.  Click HERE to BUY TICKETS!

Wikipedia says: Sierra Maestra are the guardians of the Cuban son music tradition. They creatively preserved this infectious dance music and have gone on to be its finest performers. Always popular with dancers as well as listeners, they have played at clubs and festivals around the world to huge acclaim.  The band have played a hugely significant part in the recent global explosion in popularity of Cuban music. Indeed, their ex-leader, Juan de Marcos González was the man who created Buena Vista Social Club while still with the band.

New dance band combination: Papiosco and Salsamania … salsa and timba classics tomorrow Fri Jan 17

Papiosco y Salsamania

Led by Jorge Luis Torres ‘Papiosco’ and featuring Pablosky Rosales (tres guitar and vocals), Aris Montenegro (congas),  Alexis Baro (trumpet), Roberto Riveron (bass) Jorge Maza (flute and sax) and Jorge Betancurt (piano), Sasamania performs a wide range of Cuban salsa and timba classics.

Santos teaches the beginner dance lesson… Roland Hunter band is solid Cuban feel son con jazz at 8 pm… no extra charge!

Papiosco CD release party – Lula Lounge, Wed Feb 5 2014 – mark it down!

As a 10-year-old conguero… Jorge Luis Torres (“Papiosco”) was first seen on Cuban television as a protege of Tata Guines.  He was introduced then as Tata’s “relief pitcher”… the performance amazed the public and musicians alike… and Papiosco’s services have been in demand from that day on with top Cuban bands and performers.

Fans world-wide who know their percussion have had their eyes out for this CD… and the release party is Wednesday, Feb 5 at Lula Lounge, Toronto.You can buy this CD by digital download from cdbaby, Amazon, and iTunes and possibly others by now.

The first review on Amazon is by Alberto Nacif, himself a professional US percussionist, tells the story:

“This is the first release as a leader for Jorge Luis Torres ‘Papiosco’, an important percussionist from Cuba, now living in Toronto. He is a veteran of many great Cuban bands, including Omara Portuondo, Cubanismo, and Pablo Milanes. This release has a fine variety of music styles and textures which showcase Papiosco’s great versatility as a percussionist, but manage to maintain his personal rhythmic style. Jane Bunnett and Hilario Duran are musicians with whom Papiosco plays regularly are both featured on this recording. I strongly recommend this!”

Iroko Project

Tonight at Lula Lounge: Jorge Maza and Tipica Toronto

Jorge Maza y Tipica Toronto tonight at Lula Lounge…

In the style known as Charanga Francesa (with the addition of Cuban tres guitar), Tipica Toronto is led by veteran flautist, Jorge Maza, who performed for many years with Cubanisimo.

These guys can move you just as well as the bands who focus on more modern music.  Jorge Maza on flute and Tipica Toronto will heat up the city tonight…

Jan 3 at Lula Lounge – Cafe Cubano, Eliana Cuevas

Café Cubano – 10:30 pm.   Led by piano player Jorge Betancourt and featuring some of the city’s top Cuban players, Cafe Cubano is one of Toronto’s most popular salsa and timba bands.

Come early… and for no extra charge you can take in a show by Eliana Cuevas… at 8 pm.

Through years of touring around the world, across Canada, and collaborating with Juno Award-winning performers, Eliana Cuevas has grown into an accomplished singer-songwriter and bandleader with unlimited colours in her compositional and lyrical palette.

Café Cubano

Led by piano player Jorge Betancourt and featuring some of the city’s top Cuban players, Cafe Cubano is one of Toronto’s most popular salsa and timba bands.

Roberto Linares Brown Orch – Cuba in Toronto Christmas party … with Yoser and band

One of Cuba’s most talented arrangers and composers, Linares Brown began his career with Cuban groups Valentin y Los Del Caribe, Azucar Negra and Adalberto Alvarez

Okokan presents Christmas party night.

In celebration of the holidays this week’s Havana Club Cuba Libre Friday is dedicated Toronto’s incredible Cuban talent and all those Cubaphiles in the GTA. has been promoting Cuban events in Toronto since 2006 and with partner Okokan productions has produced some of the most memorable Cuban concerts that the city has seen in the last decade.

This night will go down in Toronto Cuban party history! Roberto Linares has lined up a 12 piece salsa band AND invited additional special musical guests to join him on stage.

The evening will feature an 8pm opening set by Cuban bassist Yoser Rodriguez and his trio, dance performances by some of  Toronto’s teachers, great door prizes (gift certificates to restaurants and concerts!) and the talented photographer Anna Encheva to record the evening for your facebook viewing pleasure (while you recover the next day!) .

Bring your favourite Cuban memorabilia, flags and momentos for the photos. Dress up in blue, red and white … create you own Cubania!!!

DJ Bernal in the house playing top Cuban salsa tracks and other favourites

CU DANCE Santos Lee and his group will be hosting the dance lesson
Performances to be confirmed keep checking our facebook event page and of course

The cover is just the regular $15  but is offering a “Loonie Like”. Like CU DANCE on facebook and get a ” Loonie ” back .

C.U. Dance Productions Year-end Salsa Party

Here are some highlights of the night:

• Student Performance Group – We started a Performance Class in late September. The students in the class have been working hard the past few months; they will debut their new choreography at the party! Please come out and show them your support! We will also have a couple of other performances for your enjoyment!

• BYOB – We want to keep the party fun, relaxed and casual. We will provide complementary non-alcoholic refreshments, but feel free to bring-your-own-booze to enjoy!
• Dance hosts – We hope this party will be a great way to reconnect with old friends but also to meet new people. We will have a few designated dance hosts (ladies and gents) who will be on hand to mingle and dance.

Cover charge is $5 before 10pm, or $7 thereafter. There will be a complementary Salsa lesson at 9pm.  Location:  252 Eglinton Avenue East (& Mt. Pleasant), 2nd floor, Love to Dance studio

Timba & Cubaton Saturday night at Clave Social!

One of the only parties in Toronto featuring TIMBA, AfroLatino Dance Co‘s monthly “Salsa Klimax” party is this weekend. If you have never been, or not in a while, the party is on two floors now. Timba and cubaton upstairs with DJ Yumaniche, and Afro-Caribbean downstairs with DJ LAS – kizomba, bachata, semba, zouk, afro-house, soca, dancehall.

This month’s party features a kizomba lesson at 9:45, and a samba performance.

Tickets are $10 in advance at the school or before 10pm, $12 before 12am, $15 after midnight.

Online tickets at

Clave Social is 1345 St. Clair Avenue West (just EAST of Lansdowne Ave)


Cuba Libre Friday With Changui Havana + AfroLatino Dance + DJ Suave

This Friday there will be lots of casino dancing at Lula. With AfroLatino doing the lesson at 9:30pm and a casinera birthday party happening, there’s bound to be some random ruedas!!

8pm: vocalist Fernando Gallego who recently relocated from Spain and guitarist Juan D. Toledo (of the popular latin fusion group Santarias) bring us a very special evening of flamenco song (cante) and guitar.

Tonight: Salsa Saturday With Changui Havana + Baila Boogaloo + VJ Kruz + 5th Annual Haunted Halloween

Changui Habana 10:30pm

This twelve-piece all-Cuban group moves effortlessly from salsa and merengue to cumbia, bachata and gritty steet-style timba.

Prizes for best Hallowe’en costume:

Lula Dining Certificates

Lula HOT Salsa CDs

Baila Boogaloo Dance Lesson Gift Certificates

Bella Dance Shoes Gift Certificates

‘What Kills Me’ The Vampire Thriller & Amazon’s best seller ebook

MHAI YOGA : Breath, Movement and Ritmo Latino ! This Sunday Nov 3 2013

MHAI YOGA presents: A Celebration of Breath, Movement and Ritmo Latino

Ready to open your hearts and shake your hips? Join us for a final afternoon of yoga a lo Cubano with Eduardo Pimentel, followed by sexy salsa with Mike Sobreira, some vibrating afro latin moves with

Melissa Noventa, delicious cake and incredible people!! Come out and breathe, come out and dance!

Cost: pay what you can/donation
Date: Sunday Nov 3rd 2013
Time: 3:30pm-8pm
Location: Hub 14, 14 Markham St Toronto (Queen & Bathurst)

Cuba Libre at Lula Fri Nov 1 – Jorge Maza Y Tipica Toronto

10:30pm Jorge Maza Y Tipica Toronto

In the style known as Charanga Francesa (with the addition of Cuban tres guitar), Tipica Toronto is led by veteran flautist, Jorge Maza, who performed for many years with Cubanisimo.


Café Con Pan

Mexican ensemble Café Con Pan blends traditional son jarocho with original compositions and baroque improvisation. The combination of traditional hand-made guitars, zapateado dancing, violin and bass evokes the tropical landscape where this music originated in the 17th century. Featuring Kali Niño, Alec Dempster, Claudio Saldivia and Cristian Saldivia. Alec’s beautiful new book about son jarocho “Lotería Jarocha” features 60 linoleum prints.

Cuba Libre at Lula Fri Oct 25 – Cafe Cubano

10: 30 pm CAFE CUBANO

Led by piano player Jorge Betancourt and featuring some of the city’s top Cuban players, Cafe Cubano is one of Toronto’s most popular salsa and timba bands.  Join the dancers at Lula tonight, or sit and absorb the energy!

Come early and get free dance lesson at 9:30.

Plus, on Fridays at 8PM , a set by a local band of various types of listening music.  No extra charge for all the extra fun!

Make no mistake: the 8 PM bands featured are top-notch bands in their own right… of the same quality you might hear at quality venues around town like Hugh’s Room or Jazz Bistro, as the main act of the night.  Don’t miss out…

This Friday at 8PM:

Adam Solomon Trio

Features Adam Solomon on guitar and vocals, bassist Conrad Henderson and Phil Caffery on drums.

“The Professor” Adam Solomon performs as a blues soloist as well as with his band Tikisa, creating a unique sound that combines traditional and modern coastal East African rhythms, fiesta, rumba, soukous, makossa and highlife music. He has released three CDs, Safari, Mti Wa Maisha and Rocket Express II: African Renaissance Blues. Adam Solomon is also a member of the Juno award-winning African Guitar Summit.

Conrad Henderson, a music educator from Melbourne Australia, plays acoustic and electric bass. He is adept in many styles including jazz, Latin, African, Caribbean, R’nB and funk.

Phil Caffery is new to Toronto, moving from Providence, Rhode Island, where he taught drums and performed regularly in clubs throughout New England. He was trained in jazz and performed in concert bands and in pit orchestras for numerous theater productions.

Salsa Klimax Halloween Birthday Bash – Sat, Oct 26, 2013

*** Salsa Klimax Timba & Kizomba megaparty ***


Clave Social
1345 St. Clair Avenue West, Toronto, Ontario M6E 1C3

Doors open 9:30 pm

Saturday night Oct 26


2 ROOMS + 2 SOUNDS + 2 GREAT DJ’s !!!

* CUBAN: Salsa, Timba, Cubaton by DJ Yumaniche
* AFRO+CARIBBEAN: Kizomba, Zouk, Semba, Afro-House, Dancehall, Soca, Bachata and more by DJ L’As Depique

* Free Kizomba Lesson by AfroLatino at 9:45pm

We will also be celebrating the birthdays of Albena, Kristin, Arlayna, Ysidro, Andrea, Ariel, Mark and Claire!!

Salsa Klimax Halloween Birthday Bash - Oct 26, 2013

Havana Style Cafe ! Renovated! Friday Oct 25

In Etobicoke 270 Brown’s line , Havana Style is a wonderful art gallery , cafe , restaurant with a delicious Cubano sandwich on the menu.  They have just renovated and  are promising some dancing there . The owners are inviting everyone to come and check it out this Friday Oct 25 2013  from 9pm.. Click on image and check out blogto’s great review and pics by fellow Cubano photographer Alejandro Santiago .

Roberto Linares Brown + Roberto Linares Brown – trio, then the band – Fri at Lula

Friday, October 18, 2013

8 PM:  Friday Jazz Sessions with Roberto Linares Brown Trio

10:30 PM: Roberto Linares Brown Orchestra

The elephants are leaving Toronto… but they won’t forget Lula Lounge, the best place to make the earth tremble in this town!

From Lula: “Due to unforeseen circumstances, the group originally scheduled for this evening will not be able to perform. In their place we are pleased to present the Roberto Linares Brown Trio. One of Cuba’s most talented arrangers and composers, Linares Brown began his career with popular Cuban groups Valentin y Los Del Caribe, Azucar Negra and Adalberto Alvarez.

Arrive early to check out the early show.  Stay for the dance lesson and Linares Brown’s full salsa orchestra. Lula’s Friday special includes two great concerts, a three course meal and a dance lesson for just $49.”

Cafe Cubano + $29 Thanksgiving dinner – Lula Lounge Sat Oct 12

Kind of amazing the quality of Cuban music and musicians you can drop in and hear at Lula Lounge. Thank-you Lula, and thank-you to the great musicians who have found their way to Toronto!

Café Cubano –  Led by piano player Jorge Betancourt and featuring some of the city’s top Cuban players, Cafe Cubano is one Toronto’s most popular salsa and timba bands.

THE OTHER STAR of the EVENING: very affordable THANKSGIVING DINNER – cheaper than cooking. And for the many fans who don’t have family here in Canada… here’s a chance to experience the Canadian family tradition, let Lula can be it, experience the Canadian tradition of Thanksgiving dinner for CHEAPER THAN YOU CAN COOK –

Click on the photo for details!

Yani Borell, Clave Kings + Evaristo + $29 dinner … at Toronto’s amazing Lula Lounge TONIGHT Fri Oct 11

Kind of amazing the quality of Cuban music and musicians you can drop in and hear at Lula Lounge.  Thank-you Lula, and thank-you to the great musicians who have found their way to this lucky town… Oct 11 2013.

One of Toronto’s best-loved salsa singers, Yani developed his distinctive vocal style and dynamic stage presence with well known Cuban show bands including the internationally acclaimed orchestra, Valentin Y Los Del Caribe. 10:30 pm

Come early and hear Evaristo Machado… whose songs were nominated for Lucas awards on Cuban TV… 8PM

STAR # 3 for the night: a very affordable THANKSGIVING DINNER – cheaper than cooking.  And for the many fans who don’t have family here in Canada… here’s a chance to experience the Canadian family tradition, let Lula can be it, experience the Canadian tradition of Thanksgiving dinner for CHEAPER THAN YOU CAN COOK –

Click on the photo for details!

Leader in Yoga in Cuba, Pimental – part of Uma Nota – now to Oct 20

You should check out Uma Nota Festival (click the link)… it’s healthy and growing every year – covering more territory… this year, including a prominent authority on Yoga hailing from Cuba.

Eduardo Pimentel is the lead instructor for MHAI YOGA, a Toronto-based movement that dedicates itself to organizing yoga retreats in Cuba and aims at bringing together a rewarding yoga journey, Cuban culture and organic cuisine. He is also the man solely responsible for the growth and spread of yoga in Cuba. His passion for the practice developed out of an early interest in the physical and mental benefits of yoga and he began teaching himself various yoga postures out of a book. By 1982 Eduardo had begun teaching yoga anywhere and everywhere across Havana and the rest of the island. Slowly but surely the practice became recognized as a positive method of health maintenance throughout Cuba. Eduardo opened up his very own studio in Havana, Vidya Yoga where he teaches classes but also utilizes yoga as a method of alleviating health problems such as osteo-muscular pains, asthma, stress, insomnia and many more.

As president and founder of the non-governmental Cuban Yoga Association (CYA), Eduardo has trained more than 12,000 yoga practitioners and has worked and practiced with some of the world’s greatest yogis such as Krishna Kaur and Deepak Chopra during their Cuba visits. The association organizes numerous therapeutic workshops as well as meditation retreats and reaches out to the entire Cuban community in an effort to promote yoga and its immense benefits to health, harmony and life balance.

During his stay in Toronto Eduardo Pimentel will be participating in the following classes and workshops, with the support of the following studios and venues:

Shunyata Yoga –
Saturday, October 12th and 19th, 8:30 AM – Introduction to Iyengar Yoga
Saturday, October 20th, 2:00PM-5PM – Yoga in Cuba Workshop

Lula Lounge –
Saturday, October 19th, 11:30AM-1PM – Cuban Yoga in Toronto (followed by the UMA Nota Festival of Tropical Expressions, an even focusing on music, arts and culture from across the Americas –

Downward Dog –
Sunday, October 26th, 3:00PM-5PM – Hips and Balance Workshop

Cuban culture in Toronto, Canada