New York Yankee Carlos Beltran and a starring line up of artists and other Puerto Rican personalities are declaring their support for the island to the clave rhythm.
Beltran, Gilberto Santa Rosa, the group Puerto Rican Power, Pirulo of Pirulo y la Tribu, and Felo Torres of N’Klabe are among those who have responded to Gran Combo singer Anthony Garcia’s “Soneando por Puerto Rico Challenge.”
Garcia, who joined the Gran Combo, Puerto Rico’s salsa institution, in 2015, called out to his fellow young salseros on Facebook to post videos of themselves “soneando,” performing in the improvisational salsa style that has roots in Cuban son.
“We unite our voices for just one cause,” Garcia wrote in Spanish. “To send a positive message to our Puerto Rico, and at the same time keep the art of improvisation alive.”
Demonstrating that Puerto Ricans have found strength through culture during a time of economic crisis, the impressive results poured in to Garcia’s “Soneando por Puerto Rico Challenge” Facebook page after he posted his message at the end of June. On Friday (July 1), as Puerto Rico made headlines for a historic debt default, he made a new video, specifically calling out to Ismael Miranda, Tito Nieves and other high profile Puerto Rican artists to join his community-bonding effort.
Beltran, admirably keeping on rhythm using two pens as clave sticks, made his video while with the Yankees in San Diego. “My island has talent and because of that we are very proud… we won’t stop fighting,” he declared in song.
Former Minor League Player and Major League coach Mako Oliveras also clapped out his ode to his country. N’Klabe’s Felo Torres made an impassioned plea for Puerto Rico: “This has to change so things can get better and we can move forward.”
Check out the smoking personal videos from salsa great Gilberto Santa Rosa, Latin Grammy winner Pirulo and other artists here.