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Exclusive Interview with Jorge Gomez Navas of Orquesta Suave Tumbao

Watch out! Suave Tumbao, the latest revelation of 2011 Cuban music is here. Exclusive interview by Cubamusic to the orchestra director, Jorge Gomez Nava (El Suave)

Listen and download "La Canonera"

Amidst the great variety of Cuban music scenario stands out a young guy from the city of Bayamo, in the east of Cuba, who is reaching his dream of becoming one of the most valuable and consistent artists of upcoming danceable music: Jose Luis Gomez Navas, “El Suave” and his Suave Tumbao Orchestra, hammering with their brand new album “La Cañonera”.

Cubamusic:La Cañonera” is having a massive success among Cuban danceable music lovers; it is a remarkable result, considering the great number and skill of salsa and timba Cuban orchestras in circulation. Even more, the single “Que mas quieres” is currently at the top of Cubamusic Top 25. Isn’t it something really impressive?”

El Suave: ”Yes, it is very interesting indeed and what is going on I believe is a great experience for a new group like ours, which is now looking outside, on the international market. We are really pleased to have already come this far and to know that our job is appreciated by many people so positively. Even though we have recorded this disc with few resources and lot of effort , I believe we have really reached some quite good sound and performance. For that, believe me when I say that the recognition you're giving to Suave Tumbao's music is a recognition to our heart. We must thank for opening the doors and spreading Suave Tumbao's music all over the world. We really owe you a lot."

Cubamusic: "How did the idea of putting together this Orchestra come into your mind?"

El Suave: "Suave Tumbao started its professional life on April, 7th 2009. I was previously in Candido Fabrè's orchestra, where I had stayed for 13 years as piano player and arranger: that was my first source of inspiration, together with my great admiration for the music of Los Van Van, which I listened for a long time and with whom I had the pleasure of sharing the stage in La Habana, where I dueted with Roberto ‘Cucurucho’ at the piano."

Cubamusic: "So you're not a self-made musician…"

El Suave: "No, I studied music at Estevan Salas School in Santiago de Cuba."

Cubamusic: "And in 2009 you launched your music project, how did that happen?"

El Suave: "It was on the way back of a European tournée with Candido Fabrè when I decided to split from him and walk my personal path on music business. I started to make my own arrangements, dreaming of  producing something of my own. But I had no musicians. A friend of mine, named Luis, together with some musicians called me and I handed him my repertory and the arrangements I was working on. When I heard them play live, I decided to form the Orchestra. I still remember our first presentation, in Bayamo Carnival in 2006. We still were not professionals. And Candido himself came to the show, too."

Cubamusic: "And what was Maestro Fabrè's opinion?"

El Suave: "That Suave Tumbao plays really good, hahah!!"

Cubamusic: "How would you define the genre of your music, would you call it 'fusion' ?"

El Suave: "We play different genres, but mainly Songo: remember my roots, all ‘charangueras’! ...but also a fusion with timba-reggaeton, balada, bolero..."

Cubamusic: "Where is Suave Tumbao performing now? Where can we listen to the Orchestra?"

El Suave: "We play at the fairs and in Bayamo Carnival, our hometown, at the moment. Then, we're setting up out first exhibition in La Habana, and if the audience from Cuba and all around the world keeps supporting us with such great interest, we will possibily afford to set up our first international tour."

Cubamusic: "So let's wish all the best to Suave Tumbao! No doubt this Orchestra will leave a distinct mark in the danceable music of the years to come and of 21st century. Good luck!"

Reporter from Cuba for Cubamusic