Misplaced Sapphires
September 21, 2004 10:17 AM   Subscribe

Los Zafiros. A Cuban pop group that could rival the Beatles for song-craft, if not in popularity. Don't take my word for it though. Read Ry Cooder's interview, see the movie, read the movie review, or listen yourself [real|wmp].
posted by Fezboy! (13 comments total)
Brought on by the one-two punch this weekend of my first exposure to this phenomenal album and a local screening of the linked movie. Sorry, if I'm getting a bit Pepsi Blue but I have been seriously floored. Afterward the movie we sat around discussing why we—a group of not-unhep music cats and kits—had never heard of Los Zafiros before. Was it the embargo?
posted by Fezboy! at 10:18 AM on September 21, 2004

i have a couple of los zafiros albums. truly great stuff. it's genuinely beautiful music. good set of links, fezboy!
posted by nylon at 10:25 AM on September 21, 2004

Fezboy! -- What's it matter? We heard of them now -- thanks to you. I love "Bossa Cubana" and I'm going to get the album. Mucho gracias. (NPR calls them "Cuban Doo Wop." That's just ignorant. No comparison to the Beatles, either. Bringing the Beatles comparisons into a musical discussion is like bringing Hitler comparisons into political discussions. They mean to many different things to too many different people.)
posted by Faze at 10:29 AM on September 21, 2004

Every group that makes an album rivals the Beatles — almost all of them just fall way short. (What other group will ever fly to the top of the charts 30 years after they break up?) Still, I liked that track you linked to quite a lot, Fezboy!, thanks for the info.

[on preview: I agree with Faze that Ringo is a lot like Godwin.]
posted by LeLiLo at 10:35 AM on September 21, 2004

Aye, sorry about the Beatles call-out. I bought into the hype as that's one of the talking points in the film promo package. Still, I tried to Fauxness it with the 'Some people say...' in the link title. That's gotta be worth something, eh?
posted by Fezboy! at 10:46 AM on September 21, 2004

The last band compared to the Beatles were the incredibly unBeatle-like Oasis.

I'm looking forward to getting home to my unrestricted pipeline and I'll get to listening to them. Thanks for the cool new music to check out!
posted by fenriq at 10:52 AM on September 21, 2004

also check out: Os Mutantes!

The late ’60s in Brazil produced an explosion of new sounds and ideas that still reverberate throughout the world... during that time, Os Mutantes’ creative cannibalism produced psychedelic gems unlike anything else in the world. They were exactly what their name implies: a mutant genetic recombination of elements of John Cage, The Beatles, and Bossa Nova. A creature too strange and beautiful to live for very long, but too strong ever to fade away. It lives again.
posted by mcsweetie at 12:18 PM on September 21, 2004

Los Shakers were the real Hispanic-American Beatles. They had one truly great song, "Break it All" (Available in the latest Nuggets Box set), that has all the ardor you'd want from an early-Beatle number. The rest of their career, they mirrored the Beatles various stylistic transformations right up until Sgt. Pepper. Other than "Break it All," the songs are a-minus, b-plus -- which is not bad.
posted by Faze at 12:50 PM on September 21, 2004

From the first link: Miguel was a member of the famous quartet to Facundo Rivero, who after a long tour in Venezuela worked his way back home while making a living as a clown known as "Gasparin"

I am in awe of Miguel - he's everywhere! Everywhere!

I also noticed the similarity to Os Mutantes. Great minds think alike, I guess. Thanks for heads up on Zafiros, fezboy.
posted by ashbury at 1:51 PM on September 21, 2004

Hey thanks, mcsweetie & Faze, for the links to Os Mutantes and Los Shakers. And thanks for catching the Gasparin reference, ashbury. A friend of mine trained as a mime in Mexico under a master who also used the stage name Gasparin. Certainly not the same, but still that is just too effing cool.
posted by Fezboy! at 3:06 PM on September 21, 2004

I feel as if I should be served chips and dips by a very cheery, if not slightly acne riddled, 17 year old.

Sorry all Latin music makes me feel like I'm about to delve into Tex-Mex.
posted by geoff. at 3:35 PM on September 21, 2004

geoff -- You got to educate yourself, boy. There's a great big world of Latin music out there to discover. Much of it is total crap. Much of it is bland and forgettable. But once you get it into your bloodstream (not easy for a honkie), you will find, here and there, something extraordinary.
posted by Faze at 4:42 PM on September 21, 2004

it's pretty good, but it's not the beatles ... it's not even os mutantes
posted by pyramid termite at 6:25 PM on September 21, 2004

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