Throughout time, the instruments, vocals and rhythms of diverse cultures and heritages blend to create new musical forms. Much of what we listen to today can be traced back hundreds of years to the African slave trade. In the Americas and the Caribbean, enslaved people influenced the indigenous music of the region with drumming, upbeat rhythms, call and response and more. To this day, African music underpins Latin American styles such as bachata, cumbia, samba and reggaeton.  

In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, Standing in Solidarity will discuss the influence of African slaves on the creation and legacies of Latin American musical and dance forms. Our PSEG True Diversity Film Series selection is Buena Vista Social Club, a documentary about the musicians in Havana who popularized Cuban jazz.  

How to participate: 

  1. Register here. 
  2. Watch Buena Vista Social Club for free at home.
  3. Join us for a virtual panel discussion on Mon, Oct 30, at 7PM. 


Neyda Martinez, independent producer and founder of Habana/Harlem® and Director of the Media Management Graduate Program at The New School. 


Juan Cartagena, performer, composer, instructor, researcher and writer of Puerto Rican drum music and cofounder of the percussion and dance ensemble Segunda Quimbamba 

Sofia Rei, award-winning vocalist, songwriter, producer and professor at NYU’s Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music 

Andrea R. Thompson, director of development of the Afro Latin Jazz Alliance and Afro-Cuban dancer