August 08, 2015 at Lehman Center for the Performing Arts in Bronx.
Shortly after the band’s formation, Los Van Van became Cuba’s favorite dance band and came to be known for their sophisticated, often satirical lyrics chronicling the realities of Cuban life, electric instrumentation and multi-layered percussion. In addition to the traditional Cuban charanga band lineup of violins and flutes, Los Van Van also featured multiple trombones and vocalists that, along with Changuito’s virtuosity on drums and timbales, really set them apart. Starting with the song “Pero a Mi Manera“ (1972) which introduced harmonies and arranging concepts new to Latin music, Formell and Pedroso wrote dance hit after hit, many of which have become standards of Cuban music. With the support of the Cuban government, the band toured tirelessly and recorded throughout the ’80s and ’90s. And if the genius of Songo wasn’t enough, they also developed the complex rhythmic style that became known as Timba that was adapted by other bands in the ‘90s. Los Van Van soon became one of the best-known Cuban groups in the world, maintaining a loyal fan base throughout Latin America, Europe and Japan propelled by hits like: “La Sandunguera,” “Anda, Ven y Muévete,” “Te Traigo” and “Yuya Martinez.”