Piano y trova
Those who are not familiar with Pepe Rivero’s gregarious and empathetic vocation might think that Piano y trova is the album he gave himself, an intimate, free-flowing album, but at the same time structured in each cut with the delicacy and precision of a goldsmith who enjoys the beauty of what he has created on his own. On the contrary, it is a shared gift, but above all, it is a declaration of faith in the musical legacy of his native Cuba and the capacity of this music to cross borders, conquer new latitudes and permeate with dissimilar influences while maintaining its essence intact. It is not the first time that the Cuban pianist has appealed to genres and styles of Cuban popular music, assimilating them from the keys and potential of jazz and with the resources of his classical training. In fact, this is one of the most personal features of his compositional and interpretative work.
In it, Rivero presents us with a careful selection of pieces, by the great composers of the traditional Cuban trova of the first half of the 20th century, who had the guitar as an instrument of creation and expressive resource – as their condition as troubadours demanded – but who now expand their lyricism and capacity for evocation in pianistic appropriations in which tradition and creative freedom coexist.
In Tristeza -considered the first bolero in history-, Perla marina, Olvido, Veinte años, Longina and Convergencia, the pianist shows how compositions of such harmonic complexity and lyricism can transgress the frontiers of time and validate their undeniable permanence even without their texts of high poetic value.
Without forgetting the interinfluences of traditional trova and Cuban lyrical song, Pepe Rivero includes, in this selection, two classics from the Cuban songbook: Aquellos ojos verdes and Siempre en mi corazón, in which the piano took over from the guitar as the instrument of inspiration, and whose multiple versions in orchestral and chamber formats did not relegate the brilliance of their piano versions, to which Rivero now adds, with high quality, those of Rivero.
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