“We’ve missed you so much!” “The slogan of commercial signs at the end of the pandemic seems perfectly suited to the 27th edition of the Tempo Latino festival which will take place from July 28 to 31 next in Vic-Fezensac in the Gers.

For almost three decades, Vic-Fezensac has attracted thousands of visitors every last weekend of July, making Tempo Latino a unique event in Europe. This is to say if the last two years of deprivation due to Covid may have seemed long to the regulars.

Out of loyalty to the artists, the organization had promised to postpone all of the programming. We will therefore find a poster almost identical to that which was announced in 2020, with a few more surprises. Detail review.

PMO’s west coast mambo

After inviting Orquesta Akokan and Bigre! in 2019, Tempo Latino receives a new large ensemble: the Pacific Mambo Orchestra and its almost twenty musicians. Beyond the contractual mambo, the PMO offers a repertoire that will delight dancers with salsa adaptations of Chaka Khan and Stevie Wonder or a new version of the Pantera Mambo from 33. The big band installed on the west coast of the United States -Unis does not forget Latin jazz with a cover of the standard One Night In Tunisia or a tribute to the composer Sergei Rachmaninoff.

Los Van Van, still and always the locomotive of salsa in Cuba

Its front line may have changed several times, its founder Juan Formell having left us, but Los Van Van has accompanied the daily lives of Cubans for fifty years. After the songo of the 70s, Los Van Van jumped on the bandwagon of the timba (modernized Cuban version of salsa) at the turn of the 90s, at a time when the world got to know the Buena Vista Social Club. He even became the locomotive with Llego Van Van, a cult album from 1999 that won a Grammy Award. This is the era of the magic trio Pedrito Calvo/Mayito Rivera/Roberto Hernández. Twenty years later, with the release of “Legado”, the first album led by Samuel Formell, Juan’s son, Los Van Van is still an icon in Cuba. For its fiftieth anniversary in Vic-Fezensac, Los Van Van invites a star of choice: Alexander Abreu, leader of Havana D’Primera, numero uno of salsa in Cuba

Interactivo, urban experiments made in Havana

We expect a lot from the coming of Interactivo at Tempo Latino. The international audience was able to discover the band of Robertico Carcassès ten years ago thanks to the Havana Cultura program by Gilles Peterson. Regulars of Havana nights know his residence at the Bertold Brecht. Urban, with hip-hop, rock, trova, jazz and of course Afro-Cuban influences. Experimental, Interactivo is a collective whose line up is constantly evolving. Interactivo introduced hip-hop singer Telmary. Brenda Navarrete and Cimafunk passed through its ranks. On the musician side, there are big names: Oliver Valdés, Yaroldy Abreu, Rodney Barreto, Carlos Miyares and the indispensable Julito Padrón. Interactivo has just celebrated its 20th anniversary with a flattering anniversary album.

Con Tumbao, le All-Stars surprise d’Issac Delgado

The arrival of Issac Delgado is already an event in itself. It has been several years since Eric Dufau, musical director and founder of the festival, tried to bring in the Cuban crooner. From his beginnings with NG La Banda, Issac Delgado has become a benchmark for salsa in Cuba. Thirty years later, his last album “Lluvia y Fuego” is remarkable. Issac Delgado does not come empty-handed. He will be joined by an All-Stars of incredible leaders and sidemen. Imagine: Pedrito Martínez, Oscar Hernández (Spanish Harlem Orchestra), Alain Pérez, Tony Succar (the Michaël Jackson project seen five years ago), Robby Ameen or Conrad Hedwig. The premiere will take place in a few days at the San Francisco Jazz Festival. Since we tell you it’s an event!

The contagious energy of the London Afrobeat Collective

Honesty obliges us to recognize that we do not know much about the London Afrobeat Collective, except that it arrives preceded by a flattering reputation and that the style practiced, the afrobeat, has often seduced the audience of Tempo Latino. On the other hand, we know well the charismatic singer with the powerful voice Juanita Euka whose first album has just been reviewed in “Le Jazz et la salsa”. In short, Londoners have some serious tricks up their sleeve.

Alain Pérez, the poet of the timba

If he is a star in Cuba, Alain Pérez is still little known in France. The singer-bassist began with Celia Cruz and worked for ten years with Paco de Lucía. With his personal texts and elaborate melodies, the bassist singer arrived in the world of the timba with a decidedly different proposal. If the success of his last two albums ADN and El Cuento De La Buena Pipa have certainly helped to make him better known to dancers, at “Jazz and salsa” we got stuck on the magnificent melodies of the previous Hablando Con Juana. After a New Morning before the pandemic, this will be Alain’s first big stage in France. Impossible not to honor him on Sunday.

At the time of listing this program, the columnist finds it difficult to hide his excitement and can only encourage the reader to come and discover or reconnect with “the spirit of Vic. »

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