From Alex Cuba's new album, the song Caballo: 02 Caballo
The first time Alex Cuba laid eyes on Lake Michigan was through a plane window, and the water just went on and on and on, filling the frame endlessly.
“I said that’s no lake, it’s a sea! It’s so impressive, whether in summer or winter.”
He may carry his homeland as an artistic surname, but Alex Cuba – real name Alexis Puentes – is from a little inland town on the island called Artemisa, far from the waters. Its biggest claim to fame, besides perhaps Alex himself, is probably the Hotel Campoamor, where a prominent member of the family who owned it used to hold literary salons that attracted, among others, Pablo Neruda and Ernest Hemingway. (A monument to Neruda was unveiled at the hotel just this spring.)
So he’s a Cuban but not a coastal person, not a beach guy.
“I’m not a city person either,” said Alex, who now lives with his Canadian wife and half-Canadian half-Cuban kids in the tiny town of Smithers in BC.