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Music Fund for Cuba presented Silvio Rodri­guez and his band in London's Barbican Center for one night which is to be remembered, according to the organizers.

The Godfather of the Cuban Nueva Trova movement performed on September 22 his first London show in 15 years, with a unique supporting set by friends of the Music Fund for Cuba featuring John Williams, Madness, Ska Cubano plus very special guests who received a warm welcome from the audience.

A very rare visitor to Britain, this was truly a night to remember, said reports. Silvio's music together with a group of young singer-songwriters like him, gave birth to the Nueva Trova (best translated as "new song") is a form of protest music incorporating influences from Cuban traditional and popular genres plus jazz, rock, European classical music.

Nueva Trova was part of a pan-Latin American song movement known as Nueva Canci­on, in which the lyrics reflect an attempt to escape commercial banality and address issues such as political justice, sexism, colonialism.

Now almost 60, Silvio has been performing his own tender songs of love, loss, regret, political commitment, doubt and determination with his guitar since his public debut in 1967.

He began composing since he was 13 while participating in the Literacy Campaign and continued through his military service. He is known for his eloquent, symbolic and questioning lyrics and many of his songs have become anthems across Latin America as well as in Cuba, such as Canci­on urgente por Nicaragua.

Silvio has composed for films as well as made 15 albums, many solo and some with the group Afrocuba. He has continued to evolve as an independent and uncompromising artist, reflecting the uncertainties in Cuba during the 90s in his lyrics. He is one of Cuba's most influential intellectuals and was elected an MP in 2003.

His most recent album, Cita con Angeles (Appointment with Angels 2003) is a poetic response to the Iraq war, while lamenting the early death of his heroes such as Jose Marti­, Federico Garcia Lorca, Martin Luther King, Salvador Allende and John Lennon, incorporating their words and music.

In April 2006 Silvio was presented by the Academy of Music Arts and Sciences in Spain with the Latin Lifetime Achievement Award for his 30 years work making songs that are a symbol of social and political commitment and an example of poetic writing.

Silvio is currently working on a new album, Erase que se era (It was once what it was), uniting themes composed in the most prolific time of his life, the late 60s.

He is also preparing an anthology of songs by Noel Nicola, fellow Nueva Trova singer who died last year, and composing music for the animated feature film Meñique (Little finger), produced by the Cuban Institute of Cinema Art and Industry (ICAIC).

Source: Prensa Latina

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