Monday, January 25, 2010

Los Van Van on tour

Los Van Van, the very popular Cuban band, is starting its U.S. tour with concerts in Key West on Thursday and in Miami next Sunday.

When the band last toured the United States in 1999, there were arguments and legal action over the venue. Miami’s mayor called the concert promoter “Havana Debbie,” neatly mimicking those in Havana who say if you’re not with me, you’re on the side of the foreign enemy. There were protests at the concert where some threw bottles, rocks, and eggs at concertgoers.

Call me a crazy optimist, but I’ll bet that this time, those who use the occasion to express their opposition to the Cuban government will do so peacefully.

A completely unscientific sampling of news clips and commentary on the 1999 saga is here (pdf). The Herald’s excellent Saturday story looks at Miami politics then and now. It’s here, with ticket information.

(Photo from

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