Orlando Lopez

News of another death in music today. Orlando “Cachaito” Lopez, the bassist for the Buena Vista Social Club died in Havana. It was a joy to see these superb musicians in concert in Liverpool a few years ago. Sadly, Lopez is not the first of that group to die. I feel privileged to have caught them in that marvellous Indian summer, largely brought about by the work of the estimable Ry Cooder. The group were the subject of a film by Wim Wenders. We will not see their like again.

CC BY-SA 4.0 Orlando Lopez by Dr Rob Spence is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

5 Responses to “Orlando Lopez”

  1. Oh, that’s sad news.

    And you heard and saw them live? I envy you! But at least I saw the Wenders documentary which was great!

    Do you know how it started? Ry Cooder played Wim Wenders a cassette with a mix of the first album, after he had returned from Havana and asked him to check it out. Wenders said he was electrified by this music and listened to it for hours. The next day he asked Ry: Who are these kids you found in Havana? They’re just incredible. And Ry laughed and said: They’re not exactly kids! And then he told him about Omara and Ruben and Ibrahim and Compay, and all the others. And Wim Wenders said: If only half of this is true, I have to go and meet them.

  2. sad news indeed.. I also can count myself lucky to have seen them (in the Bridgewater, which was filled with signs requesting us not to dance in the aisles… yes, really)I don’t think I’ve ever seen such joy in a performance (which I think is also captured in the Wenders documentary)
    My son introduced me to their work some years ago, and later bought me tickets as a birthday present to go see them. It was a present for himself too of course. I had the great pleasure of reciprocating this type of present giving by buying him tickets for Leonard Cohen…
    (Cue – “What a good job you’ve done in rearing your son”)

    I think, or at least hope, we’ve started something. Any suggestions for our next night out?

  3. Thanks for that, Francessa- I didn’t know. And I have the DVD, unwatched- but not for long.
    Mary – that’s a good relationship. My experience of Laughing Len is recorded in this blog some way back.
    What next – well, Jackson Browne is in town at the end of March- when I’m away- Grrr…

  4. As a fiercely partisan Mancunian, I have to grit my teeth to say anything positive about Liverpool, but hats off to the Scousers, they let us dance in the aisles at the Phil

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