Pablo Milanés, legendary Cuban singer-songwriter, dies aged 79

The Grammy-winning Cuban singer-songwriter and guitarist Pablo Milanés, recognized for pioneering the Nueva Trova motion and for hits akin to Yolanda and Amo Esta Isla, has died of most cancers in Madrid. He was 79.

One of the internationally well-known Cuban musicians, Milanés recorded dozens of albums and toured the world throughout a profession that lasted greater than 5 a long time.

Regardless of being an enthusiastic advocate for Fidel Castro’s revolution, the singer was unafraid to talk his thoughts and latterly lamented the shortage of freedom and progress on the island.

His loss of life was introduced by his agent in an announcement on Tuesday.

“It’s with nice ache and unhappiness that we remorse to tell you that the maestro Pablo Milanés has died in Madrid within the early hours of twenty-two November,” it said. “Might he relaxation within the peace and love he at all times radiated. He’ll stay endlessly in our reminiscence.”

Cuba’s prime minister, Manuel Marrero Cruz, supplied his condolences to Milanés’s household and mates, saying: “Cuban tradition is in mourning after the loss of life of Pablo Milanés.”

At his household’s request, a wake shall be held on the Casa de América cultural centre in Madrid on Wednesday. The centre described his as “an indispensable determine in Ibero-American music”, whereas the Gladys Palmera radio network and archive tweeted: “We’ll at all times love you, at all times bear in mind you and at all times sing your songs. RIP pricey Pablo Milanés.”

The artist rose to prominence following the Cuban revolution of 1959, and received renown on the island and much past as a part of the Nueva Trova motion alongside fellow Cuban musicians Silvio Rodríguez and Noel Nicola.

Nueva Trova, which emerged within the Sixties, was smiled upon by Castro’s authorities for lyrics that gave voice to its acknowledged political and social imperatives, together with the battles towards sexism, colonialism and racism.

In 1970, Milanés wrote the seminal Latin American love tune Yolanda, an everlasting favorite in every single place from Previous Havana’s vacationer cafes to Mexico Metropolis’s cantinas.

In 2003, the Spanish newspaper El País requested Milanés what number of ladies he had flirted with by telling them the tune was about them. “None,” he mentioned, laughing. “However many have advised me: ‘My youngster is the product of Yolanda.’”

The singer joined different distinguished artists and intellectuals in voicing their help for the Cuban authorities when Fidel Castro stepped down in 2006. However 4 years later, he backed a dissident starvation striker who was demanding the discharge of political prisoners.

Milanés told the Spanish daily El Mundo that Cuba’s ageing leaders were “stuck in time”, including: “Historical past ought to advance with new concepts and new males.”

In 2011, because the island was enacting financial adjustments that might permit better free-market exercise, he lobbied for President Raúl Castro to do extra.

“These freedoms have been seen in small doses, and we hope that with time they are going to develop,” Milanés advised the Related Press.

In June, the singer, who had lived within the Spanish capital since 2017, made one final go to to Havana, the place he gave an emotional concert before about 10,000 fans.

Milanés received two Latin Grammys in 2006, finest singer-songwriter album for Como un Campo de Maíz (Like a Cornfield) and finest conventional tropical album for AM/PM, Líneas Paralelas (AM/PM, Parallel traces), a collaboration with the Puerto Rican salsa singer Andy Montañez.

He additionally received quite a few Cuban honours together with the Alejo Carpentier medal in 1982 and the nationwide music prize in 2005.