Cuba brings the heat for Jazz Fest MTL tonight

Forecast for Club Soda tonight: Hot with a chance of extra effervescence. Alex Cuba takes the stage for an early set at 7pm ce soir, and believe me—he’s bringing the heat. With a sound that can be classified as funk, rock, pop—you name it, he’s tried it—Cuba is a versatile musician with boatloads of songwriting experience. Just don’t call it “world,” says Cuba.

Cuba—or Alex Puentes, as his friends no doubt call him—is from Havana, Cuba, but moved to BC with his brother Adonis in 1999 and started playing music as a duo. Since then, Cuba has released five albums, collaborated with the likes of Corinne Bailey Rae, Ron Sexsmith and of course, the ebullient Nelly Furtado, and toured endlessly. Not to mention a few awards here and there, and that Cuba is now married with three kids. Needless to say, he’s been busy.

Currently on a world tour, Cuba has made stops in Germany, Toronto, Vancouver, California, Miami, with many more on the roster. One of Cuba’s strengths is the ability to evade categorization. I ask him how he manages to continue to defy classification. “I think to be evolving—I don’t really totally know why or how that happens it just feels that with the songs I write I feel that I need to follow what they’re trying to tell me,” he says. “I am pretty strong under my own skin when it comes to music, otherwise I wouldn’t be doing what I’m doing.”

“But the truth is that people—the audience—if what you’re giving them is from your heart, they will feel it.”

Get ready to feel some feelings tonight, Montreal. And don’t forget your dancing shoes.

Michaela Cavanagh

Michaela lives in Halifax where her main interests include beer and eating as many burritos as she can. In addition to EastScene, she writes for The Coast and Guerilla magazine.

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