Monday, March 19, 2007

Salsa: Tito Nieves

Nostalgia can be a treacherous thing. Great songs can be loaded with bad memories, distorting your actual appreciation. The same counts for awful songs with lots of emotional value: you know you'd hate the track in any other situation, but with such pretty memories attached, you can only love it.

That's about the relationship I have with the songs of Marco Antonio Solís. I agree he's a decent songwriter with an impressive career, but his songs are so packed with romantic clichés (the violins, the way he says "amor", the honey-sweet melodies) that I wouldn't EVER listen to him. That is, if I hadn't lived in a small Guatemalan village for a year, where everybody seemed to love his music, and played it all day through. I can't listen to "Mas Que Tu Amigo" (video) without thinking of my madre postiza watching some telenovela.

So I can only love this cover by Tito Nieves, brushing up the original ballad to an uptempo salsa. Tito has retained the melody and the violins (relentlessly appealing to my sentiments ;)), but added some improvisation to keep things interesting. "Mas Que Tu Amigo" is part of a whole CD of Solís covers - but I don't think I can handle that right now :)

Tito Nieves - Mas Que Tu Amigo mp3 buy@iTunes buy@Amazon