This web-site is part of a “Cuban Trilogy Project” capturing the most historic period in the transition of the country to a new era. A certain opening up from communism.
The concert of the Rolling Stones on 24 March 2016 coincided with the even more historic visit of US President Obama to Cuba. A short while thereafter, Chanel held their annual Cruise Show with Karl Lagerfeld on 3 May in Havana.
This web-site is one of the the three fundamental elements of the “Cuban Trilogy Project”, examining the events around the Rolling Stones concert with interviews from prominent Cuban musicians, actors, artists, personalities as well as the people on the street.
The main objective of www.stonesinhavana.com is to provide compact information about a historic week in Cuba thru our own observations, together with the world media as well as the interaction with people who were there.
This site shall serve as a witness to the most important week in communist Cuban history since the Bay of Pigs Invasion in 1961 from a rock’n roll, cultural and in some way political perspective. We hope the value of the web-site will increase thru time and become an historic on-line document.
– Rock Music, Rolling Stones & Cuba:
Rock and Roll in Cuba began in the late 1950s, with many Cuban artists of the time covering American songs translated into Spanish. The Batista regime never favoured Rock and Roll, especially after the release of films like Rebel Without a Cause and The Bad Seed, among others.
When Cuba and the United States broke relations, some people considered rock “the music of the enemy, the language of the enemy”. It was the time of the Cold War, the Bay of Pigs and the Cuban Missile Crisis.
Fidel Castro banned rock music in 1961 as being a corrupting American influence that had no place in the new Communist Cuba. The ban was eventually lifted, but rock music adherents were still marginalized by the Communist establishment and looked upon with suspicion as “counter-revolutionaries”.
A rock scene in Cuba is usually seen as small and underground due to official disapproval.
In 2001, the Welsh rock group Manic Street Preachers were invited to perform in Cuba. Their concert was attended by Fidel Castro and others officials. In 2004, Castro made a speech honouring the birthday of John Lennon, whose music, both with The Beatles and as a solo artist had been banned in Cuba. A bronze statue of John Lennon has been placed in a Havana park. And the Cuban Minister of Culture paved the way to the opening of a rock venue called Yellow Submarine (El Submarino Amarillo). The Cuban National Agency of Rock, Maxim Rock was founded in 2006.
Rick Wakeman, Sepultura and Audioslave played in Havana. These rock events finally reached it’s climax with The Rolling Stones Concert in Havana on March 24, 2016 becoming the most famous act to play in Cuba since the 1959 revolution.