With Love, From Cuba

by Mike Evin

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    Bring a little of my Cuba trip home with you. All photos (front and back) are from my 2012 Cuba trip. Each postcard is dedicated to one of the cities in which I spent time in Cuba. On the back of each postcard, I write extensively about the songs that were inspired by that city.

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    Get all 10 Mike Evin releases available on Bandcamp and save 25%.

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads of Save The Artist, Evin On Earth, With Love, From Cuba, Life As A Lover, Live on Ships & Dip V, The January Muse, Let's Slow It Down, I'll Bring The Stereo, and 2 more. , and , .

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1.
New Rhythm 00:08
2.
I’ve been to a place they call the Malecon stretching for miles along the sea not too long ago I found the Malecon where all the resting lovers seemed so free CHORUS: Woah-oh - I wished that we could be Woah-oh - Malecon lovers, you and me It was hard to find a place sometimes on the Malecon but next to a family I would sit just pretending I was the oldest son who came back to town for a visit CHORUS BRIDGE: And on the other side of the family he’s got the back of his head on her thighs and his lips around her eyes They’re selling guitar strings on the Malecon for cheaper than you find them in the shops but there always is a trovadore on the Malecon even if fishing wire’s all he’s got CHORUS Woah-oh - caught between the sea Woah-oh - and Malecon lovers getting free
3.
Iyasa 00:44
4.
When you were young you heard Benny Moré Benny Moré on the radio on a Sunday at lunch your dad knew all the words he took off his shirt and he danced alone Oh, you move your hips so easily CHORUS: You had a head start you had a head start on me I hear the beat and parts but you had a head start on being free When I was young I was strapped in a car strapped in a car with the radio with the words in my head and the beat in my teeth I sang from my seat and I sang alone Oh, you move your lips so easily but... CHORUS Sha la la la hey hey hey When I'm at home I put Benny Moré Benny Moré on my stereo on a Monday at lunch I don't know any words but I take off my shirt and I dance alone Oh, I take my hips so seriously CHORUS
5.
Shine on me, Matanzas stars shine on me
6.
Matanzas 04:32
In Matanzas, in Matanzas there are people waiting on a phone call in Matanzas, in Matanzas there are children using a medicine bottle as a baseball in Toronto, in Toronto in Toronto, in Toronto I don’t speak Spanish anymore like I did in Matanzas In Matanzas, in Matanzas Mariam is waiting on bassoon reeds in Matanzas, in Matanzas Gilberto is grooving to 90’s R&B in Toronto, in Toronto in Toronto, in Toronto I don’t move my shoulders anymore like I did in Matanzas Just like you I wait too for a call In Matanzas, in Matanzas promises were made inside the kitchen in Matanzas, in Matanzas helping Delvis everyday with her English diction in Toronto, in Toronto in Toronto, in Toronto I don’t make promises anymore like I did in Matanzas
7.
8.
Crespo 02:50
I am back in Canada and the stiffness in my neck is plainer now to me than before I went away All I wanted was just a couple of breaths so deep I wouldn’t need to leave Mejunje CHORUS Oh, Crespo bang your chest one time for me Oh, Crespo raise your hands to the air somehow it was meant to be - that I’d meet you there If I had more gumption I would live just like you drink rum all day, live in a ponchero Not have legal papers but a citizen through and through carry speakers to Mejunje for the evening show CHORUS Oh, Crespo bang your chest one time for me Oh, Crespo raise your hands to the air Someone’s watching out for you - someone up there If I could I’d send some money to that punk rock band and T-shirts from Montreal, but I’m shirtless now Crespo when you talked to me it was hard to understand I hardly drank, didn’t smoke at all but felt Santa Claran somehow CHORUS Oh, Crespo bang your chest one time for me Oh, Crespo raise your hands to the air Someday I will make it back - until then take care
9.
10.
Dear Darien, dear Adriana I’m in Montreal, back in Canada these old familiar streets against a 4/4 beat used to feel like home I just gave to your friend Elena a disc of music you might like it kept me up all night CHORUS 1: I started with Silvio’s songs and found out the night’s not so long Silvio’s songs made their mark on me but I think it was more how you’d sing a night full of Silvio’s songs to me I’m not one to show too much before I go I walk away in lights, and never get to know if I stayed a little longer and played a little stronger what would I see grow? but in the morning I came to your gallery to see if you remembered me I almost stayed asleep CHORUS 2: We started with Silvio’s songs and found out the night’s not so long Silvio’s songs seemed intruiging to me but now and forever they will be linked to the way you sang Silvio’s songs to me BRIDGE: I’ll be back in Trinidad someday Elena tells me that’s where you wanna stay just when I begin to learn if I give more of myself I get more love in return Take care Darien, take care Adriana from a new-found friend in Canada it might take a while so think of me and smile soon we'll catch up in style and when we run out of things to say we’ll let the dancing lessons start with open awkward hearts CHORUS 3: We started with Silvio’s songs and found out the night’s not so long Silvio’s songs lasted 'till way past three But now they’ve become a memory you singing Silvio’s songs a night full of Silvio’s songs to me
11.
What’s a day if not to celebrate being around to celebrate? the wrinkles ‘round her eyes as she sucks on ice from a water bottle give away CHORUS: It’s Independence Day, Parque Central in Trinidad, Cuba I’d like to know how we’re really that different

about

This is an EP of songs that were inspired by my trip to Cuba in 2012 to study bata percussion. Most of these were written after my return to Canada, but I've also included "field recordings" from Cuba. I recorded most of the songs in August 2015 in my Toronto apartment, with the help of Zephie James and Ian MacKay on percussion.

credits

released November 25, 2015

TORONTO RECORDINGS:
Piano and lead vocal: MIKE EVIN
Conga and djembe: ZEPHIE JAMES
Assorted percussion: IAN MACKAY

CUBA RECORDINGS:
Bata percussion: MIKE EVIN, GILBERTO "INDIO" MORALES, LORENA
Vocals: MIKE EVIN, GILBERTO "INDIO" MORALES
Piano: MIKE EVIN

Recorded and mixed by Mike Evin
Recorded in Summer 2012 and Summer 2015

All music and lyrics by Mike Evin, except "Iyasa" and "Moyu Ba Orisha" traditional

Special thanks to all of my friends in Cuba who inspired these songs. I will find a way to get these recordings to you somehow. Thanks as well to Zephie and Ian for giving their time to make these recordings.

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Mike Evin Toronto, Ontario

I play piano and write songs.

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