Let´s face it, a Tuesday night is not exactly the time when you expect to enjoy a live concert of a rock band. But what can we do? Havana is a magical place as far as music is concerned, and the Submarino Amarillo does not respect days of the week to give us the best of what it sounds in our city in rock bands.
So I arrive much earlier than the concert schedule and I have a good reason for it: I’m going to meet Ariel Macias Hernandez, director of the Tracks band, which is the protagonist of this night.
After a good handshake, classic of those who recognize themselves first as music lovers and then as rockers, we try to start a conversation, but it is impossible to compete with the Guns & Roses music inside the Submarino Amarillo. So we decided to sit in one of the banks of the John Lennon Park, maybe not the quietest place in Havana night, but at least enough for Ariel to tell me how this project came about.
“Tracks has many meanings. It could be an audio track, a trace, a path … but in essence it is leaving an impression, it is leaving a mark on the person who listens to us. We are not a band put together with musicians from diverse backgrounds, but a group of friends that have been working together in the Gens band for almost ten years. Ten years is not three days. But we decided to find our own way and create our own music, instead of only doing covers of famous rock bands “.
“For the record, we have nothing against covers, we love them and in fact Tracks keeps doing them, because in reality they are the ones that allow us to play in places like the Submarino itself or the Casa de la Música de Miramar. Today, for example, we will not play our own songs. Just covers”.
“Tracks was born on May 15, 2016, with the idea of being able to sing to our generation, which has lost a bit of the spirit of the 90s, when the national rock had a real boom. It is also the idea of leaving a real mark, because nobody will be remembered for playing good covers, but for his own work. This is the spirit of all BandEra Studio bands where we belong, with whom we recently made a super concert in the Salon Rosado de la Tropical “.
“Tracks is simply an alternative Cuban music band. But in its more general concept: separating rock as a genre from Cuban music is unfair and illogical. We play rock, but with syncopation, clave… in short, all that music that, whether we want it or not, we have in our blood from hearing it from childhood. We are not Chinese, although we play rock “.
“We are in this moment mixing our first album, Efecto Secundario, and in it you can find the same a tango played with reagee; piano, voice and bass … is not just rock. We also had many friends who worked with us in that album. The whole disc is in Spanish, with a single theme in English. But we are an independent band, not associated with any label. The songs are by our singer Noa and it’s produced by Miguel Comas and Wilfredo Gatell. “
“Our audience is very varied, but above all it is made of students, which does not have as much budget as it would require going to concerts of other music genres. In addition to the Submarino we have presentations at La Madriguera, the Boulevard de San Rafael, the Cuban Art Factory… where there´s a job, there we are. In the near future, I think that before the end of the year we should have a video clip to put it in spaces like Lucas or the Canal Clave so that the Cuban public can get to know us a little more “.
I wish I had continued talking with Ariel, but it was almost time to get on stage. So I had to, rather than resign myself, sit down to enjoy the music and the musicians of Tracks, one of the most promising and professional bands of the Cuban alternative rock scene.
Tracks is Ariel Macías Hernandez (bass guitar), Jesús A. Machado y Ernesto García (guitars), Yord Noa (vocal), Diana Ruz (vocal and keyboard) and Javier López (drums).