During Cuban Music’s Golden Age there were many bands that made their mark and claimed their fame. One of the most significant of the time is the “Orquesta Aragon” founded in 1939. This Band would become the premier Charanga band in all of Cuba. They were distinguishing themselves for several characteristics, a solid music crew; combination of voices yet to be duplicated and their embracing of the Cha-cha-cha. There are many components to be written about regarding the success of this band, then and now (the band still goes on with a new generation), but I will focus on one.
The band had three front men who sang in harmony, creating their trademark sound. Of the three men one had the additional talent of dancing and I mean really dancing. His name was Felo Bacallao and I have heard about this man for years (thanks Dad), but I had never seen him other than on album covers and pictures.
A while back I was watching Cuban music videos on YouTube and it occurred to me he might be out there. I was pleased to find him and surprised by what I saw. This fellow would break away from the microphone while the band embellished the song. His body goes in all directions, always perfectly timed with the music and his feet do things few others could do. At one point he does something that really caught my attention.
He does Michael Jackson’s Moonwalk, or should I say, years later Michael did “Felos Moonwalk”. You see, Felo was doing the Moonwalk, before Michael was born.
Watch the Video. Enjoy! (the side stepping moon walk starts at mm:ss 1:45)