Arsenio and Bebo


Tuesday, March 6, 2018, 1:00pm to 3:00pm


Holden Chapel, Harvard Yard


Speaker: Ned Sublette, composer, musician, record producer, musicologist, and author

Moderator: Yosvany Terry, Director of the Harvard Jazz Band

Tresero / bandleader Ignacio Arsenio Travieso Scull (1911-1970), whose stage name was Arsenio Rodríguez, and his contemporary, pianist / bandleader Ramón "Bebo" Valdes (1918-2013), were giants whose dominant influence on 20th-century Cuban music ultimately had a global reach. Ned Sublette discusses their work and legacy, with images from Arsenio's home town of Güines and Bebo's home town of Quivicán.

Ned Sublette is the author / co-author of four books, including Cuba and Its Music: From the First Drums to the Mambo (Chicago Review Press), and is the founder of Postmambo Studies, Inc., which takes travelers on cultural visits to Cuba. In 1991, he co-founded the record label Qbadisc, releasing albums and coordinating US tours by Los Muñequitos de Matanzas, NG La Banda, Carlos Varela, and many more. Since 1990 he has researched and produced more than 150 audio documentaries about African and African-diaspora music for the public radio program Afropop Worldwide, for whom he reported from ten different countries and various US cities.