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Canada's rising nueva-nueva trova star provides Exclaim! with an exclusive track from his forthcoming album due in October. What the hell is nueva-nueva trova? Take out the first "nueva" and you've got a term applied to Cuban singer-songwriters of the '60s and '70s who were highly influenced by Bob Dylan and the Beatles. Cuba is the nu-soul equivalent to this sound of yesteryear.

Cuba, whose real last name is Puentes, is one of the very few exponents of this large but lesser-known influence on Cuban pop culture. His two albums and continuous touring have paid dividends since he began his solo career in earnest five years ago. He secured a top ten hit in the UK with "Lo Mismo Que Yo" from his first album and has been moving on up like his towering afro ever since.

"Caballo" is firmly in line with the smooth and funky sound from his first two albums, which have made him a fan favourite due to extensive touring. Though his music doesn't sound experimental per se, his intimate croon and stripped down, nearly percussion-free sound are a radical departure from the majority of mass-marketed Cuban sounds.


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