Slavery and Cuba

I am writing about the slave trade from Africa to Cuba because of its influence on the music there. According to Sublette, Havana had a bigger music scene from “the early days of Spanish Colonization of the New world” than “the rest of the Antilles put together.” However, Sublette doesn’t delve into this point right afterwards but rather goes into the similarities and differences in African American and Afro-Cuban music (probably because of the slave trades influence on both America and Cuba), citing, “call and response, importance of rhythm, and spirit possession.”

I was interested in these three aspects because of how they related to other music we have studied in the call and response aspect and in the importance of rhythm. Though I’ll admit I don’t always understand the direct references to rhythm and beats, I will say that I’ve recognized that the patterns in rhythm are very crucial to the definition of types of music. I wish the author had gone into a deeper analysis of how the slave trade affected music though- of how slaves brought their regional musicality together into a cohesive sound.



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