La Suerte Es Loca – Mónika Mesa


Mónika Mesa’s career passes through numerous
bands. These include the girl groups Anacoana and Las Chicas Del Sol as well as NG La Banda and Azúcar Negra. Produced by Joel Domínguez, this is, I think, her second CD but there could be more.
Some of the tracks herein have been knocking around longer but I first caught wind of this in 2018. I was mightily impressed hearing the Joel Domínguez penned Somos La Clave. Celebrating the anniversary of a commercial enterprise- La Clave Cubana agency- is an unlikely inspiration. All the same, this, like Los Van Van’s earlier Conga Tour, rocks. Any prominent Cuban musician not included in the lineup would doubtless be reaching for their lawyer to make a discrimination case.  At any rate, I set out to try to obtain the track and forthcoming album. Here it is!
The CD is clearly a commercial venture, the incessant self tagging “te canta Mónika Mesa” and variations thereof, annoys in places. Material spans numerous genres, stretching Mesa’s versatility beyond her vocal ability. Included is some quite hard edged Timba,  schmaltzy ballad, some collaborations with Los Yakis, a Bolero and some well arranged but lightweight Salsa. A duet with ex Tumbao Habana Waldo Mendoza is so cliched it should be included in any Spinal Tap spoof of Salsa Romantica. Following an interesting intro with some nice bass, so stressy do their protestations of mutual desire become, it sounds like a heated argument in places. It’s also woefully out of tune. Wonderful!
La Lara Lara is nicely done, its also where Mesa’s voice sounds most relaxed. Though it bears more than a passing resemblance to the title track of  HDP’s Pasaporte, Mr Abreu clearly doesn’t mind as he guests on vocals. Another track that grabbed me is SMS. Well, it would. If the aspirational Cuban middle class now want to sing about SMS rather than old tech telephone love, I at least can’t fault the coro, brass or percussion. Not deep, but very funky and makes you want to dance.
There are a number of passable yet forgettable tracks included, the Los Yakis collaboration El Que Sabe, Sabe included. For me its a three track album but these three I wouldn’t want to be without, so I’m exercising my perk of the job and keeping a CD for me.
Recommended in places.
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01  La Suerte Es Loca

02 El Tumbao

03 Tengo Ganas De Ti ft Waldo Mendoza

04 Soy Tan Feliz

05 ¡Ay Pena Penita Pena! Ft Los Yakis

06 Mi Marianao Ft Los Papines

07 **SMS**

08 Como Yo Me Pongo

09 *La Lara Lara* ft Alexander Abreu

10 Todo No Es Lo Que Parece

11 Tu Pierdes Más Que Yo

12 El Que Sabe, Sabe

13 A Mis Padres

14 **Somos La Clave**