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Exclusive content obtained by XPN in Cuba provides in-depth look into Havana music scene

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – Need one last getaway before fall? WXPN, the nationally-recognized leader in Triple A (Adult Album Alternative) music and noncommercial radio service of the University of Pennsylvania, can take you away to Havana, Cuba during the next installment of its “Sense of Place” series which will air every Thursday for four weeks starting Thursday, September 13. Sense of Place: Havana will air on the station's flagship World Cafe® program. It will also live online here.

Sense of Place: Havana will feature a mix of interviews, performances and videos with those engrained in the city and its music culture. Guided by Cuban jazz singer Janet Valdés, World Cafe® host David Dye will uncover Havana’s unique personality from the point of view of those who live and breathe its music scene. The exclusive content featured in this series was obtained during Dye’s trip to Havana earlier this summer.

Sense of Place: Havana features a rich online experience. A featured video will be posted each day to the Sense of Place webpage on WXPN’s website. The webpage also has an interactive map with suggestions from the musicians about where to go, eat and find the best music places in Havana.

“Music is an inherent part of the city and people of Havana,” said Dye. “It’s what brings the culture of the town to life and the people together. The diverse blend of music that exists in Havana is special and you can’t find it anywhere else. I look forward to sharing a little piece of Havana with our World Cafe® listeners through the next installment of our Sense of Place series.”

Sense of Place: Havana will feature the following:
Thursday, September 13: the segment will include Dye’s interview with and a performance by Latin GRAMMY® nominee Eme Alfonso. Molded by a renowned family of Cuban musicians, Alfonso is taking off in Havana. She’s traveled around the world with Síntesis, a jazz-fusion and Latin folklore group. Her debut record Señales ("Signs") won the Cubadisco award for best Cuban fusion album. Its follow-up, Eme, was released in July of 2012. The Sense of Place: Havana webpage will feature videos of performances by Alfonso that were taped during Dye’s trip to Cuba.

Thursday, September 20: the segment will feature an interview with members of Síntesis, the popular Afro-Cuban rock band that has greatly contributed to the development of modern Cuban music, and a performance by the group.

Thursday, September 27: the segment will dig into the current jazz scene in Havana and feature interviews with Latin jazz trumpet player and composer Yasek Manzano Silva and his band as well as Sense of Place: Havana tour guide Janet Valdés.

Thursday, October 4: the final Sense of Place: Havana segment will feature a World Cafe® archive interview with Dye and Ry Cooder, an American guitarist and composer who helped produce the Buena Vista Social Club, a recording and ensemble that pays homage to the music that was played and created at the popular Havana members club during the 1940s. The segment will include interviews with and performances by the younger musicians who have taken up the Buena Vista Social Club mantel. A video recorded at the Hotel National of a performance by the remaining members of the Buena Vista Social Club will be featured on the Sense of Place: Havana webpage.

Sense of Place is made possible by the Wyncote Foundation.World Cafe® airs at 2 p.m. EST Monday through Friday on WXPN-FM. The program is also nationally syndicated on more than 225 radio stations by NPR. For more information about World Cafe®, please visit http://xpn.org/world-cafe. For more information about WXPN, please visit http://xpn.org.

Press photos from Dye’s trip to Havana can be found online here: http://xpn.org/allaboutthemusic/photos-world-cafe-travel-adventures-in-cuba-22092.

To schedule an interview with Dye or for general press inquiries, please contact Francesca Gunning at 215-825-9624 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Elise Brown at 215-825-9644 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

WXPN, the nationally recognized leader in Triple A radio and the premier guide for discovering new and significant artists in rock, blues, roots and folk, is the non-commercial, member-supported radio service of the University of Pennsylvania. WXPN produces World Cafe® public radio’s most popular program of popular music hosted by David Dye and syndicated by NPR, and the Peabody Award winning Kids Corner hosted by Kathy O’Connell. WXPN also produces the alternative rock service, XPN2 (http://www.xpn.org/xpn2/home) as its secondary radio channel in HD. WXPN serves the greater Philadelphia area at 88.5 FM, the Lehigh Valley at 104.9, Worton/Baltimore at 90.5 FM, Lancaster/York at 88.7 FM, Harrisburg at 99.7 FM and the world via online streaming at XPN.org.