Unplug from your busy day with the smooth, jazzy stylings of Cuban singer Daymé Arocena. Her new video, “Don’t Unplug My Body,” is a visual treat of liquefying colors and the beautiful Arocena scatting and gracefully sashaying in all white. The 22-year-old vocalist/arranger is the latest signee to London DJ Gilles Peterson’s venerable Brownswood Recordings—a soulful talent already popular in Cuba, whom Peterson encountered while on one of his many trips to pre-American embargo-lifted Cuba. Working with Arocena on his Havana Cultura project to develop and connect promising Afro-Cuban artists with an international phalanx of music-makers led to Peterson releasing her debut album, Nueva Era, in June.
Gilles Peterson describes Arocena as “the one I’ve been searching for during my 10-year hunt; Cuban soul with attitude. Daymé is the gem. She sings her heart out. Songs of youth and love. Santo Grial!” We share Peterson’s excitement over Daymé’s sultry musical gifts, and we believe you will too.—Sun Singleton
Sun Singleton is a Northern Virginia-born singer/journalist based in New York City. Follow her on Twitter @sunsing.
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