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The Culture Vulture

About cultural things: music, dance, literature, theatre and local events.

‘Buena Vista Social Club’ re-visited
Wednesday, May 8, 2024 @ 3:20 PM

By The Culture Vulture

Wednesday 8 May 2024

The Culture Vulture wrote an appreciation of this musical phenomenon  just over a year ago for the website Now, news has just broken that the American musician Ry Cooder, who discovered the elderly, down-on-their-luck Cuban musicians on a visit to the communist island in the Caribbean in 1996, has produced a 25th Anniversary edition on vinyl and CD.



‘Buena Vista Social Club’ is both the name given to this extraordinary group of musicians and the album, recorded in just seven days in 1996 in Havana’s 1950s vintage EGREM studios.

It was clear from the atmosphere of the recording sessions that something very special was taking place. However, no one could have predicted that Buena Vista Social Club would become a worldwide phenomenon – awarded a Grammy in 1997 and, at 8 million copies, outselling any other record in the same genre.

The acclaim of the original album has elevated the artists - including Ibrahim Ferrer, Eliades Ochoa, Compay Segundo, Rubén González and Omara Portuondo - to superstar status, inspired an award-winning eponymous film by German director Wim Wenders, and has contributed to popularising Cuba’s rich musical heritage.

Produced by Ry Cooder for World Circuit records, the timeless quality of the music and the sheer verve of the veteran performers have ensured that this will go down as one of the landmark recordings of the 20th century.

To celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the album’s recording, producer Ry Cooder and World Circuit’s Nick Gold have gone back to the original tapes and into the archive to produce this Deluxe Remaster package, featuring previously unheard tracks from the original 1996 recording sessions, previously unseen photos, and new liner notes.

I loved the BVSC and saw them live in London, Manchester and Jaca (Aragón, Spain). I have just ordered a copy from for 14,99€ and am awaiting its arrival with bated breath.



My fellow blogger, The Spanish Fly, is currently away in Germany. He tells me he has found the double CD on for only 8.99€. He ordered it and it should be delivered to his hotel free of charge on Friday.


© The Culture Vulture


Further reading:

Whatever happened to BUENA VISTA SOCIAL CLUB? (



Culture Vulture

History Man




Paul Whitelock

Spanish Fly


World Circuit



picture-alliance/United Archives/Impress




25th Anniversary edition, Aragón, Buena Vista Social Club, Caribbean, Compay Segundo, Cuba, Culture Vulture, Deluxe Remaster, EGREM Studios, Eliades Ochoa, Grammy, Havana, History Man, Ibrahim Ferrer, Jaca, London, Manchester, Omara Portuondo, Paul Whitelock, Rubén González, Ry Cooder, Nick Gold, Spanish Fly, Wikipedia, Wim Wenders, World Circuit,,,


Like 0


lenox said:
Wednesday, May 8, 2024 @ 7:47 PM

The arrival of the Buena Vista Social Club album and show was a great eye-opener (or ear-opener, maybe?). Marvelous music from people who come by it naturally, without looking for fame nor fortune.
I shall have to get hold of an Amazon subscriber...

Paul Whitelock said:
Thursday, May 9, 2024 @ 11:44 AM

Hi Lenox. Thanks for your comment. Glad to see you have a great taste in music. I await delivery of my double CD to my hotel in Germany tomorrow. I paid just 8.99€ including p & p
It's available on Amazon Spain for 6€ more. Why is that? It's not yet available to listen to on Amazon.

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