Andrés Calamaro is the stuff of rock en español legend. He’s probably the genre’s most prolific composer. That’s why many orthodox rockeros got really disappointed when they found out about his newest single, off his album On The Rock, which isn’t really rock, but cumbia instead.
The song “Tres Marías” features the keytard talent of cumbia villera pioneer Pablo Lescano (who already contributed to tracks by Fidel Nadal and Los Fabulosos Cadillacs), but it’s not, by any means, Calamaro’s first approach to the popular Afro-Colombian rhythm. His previous album, La Lengua Popular, already included a more subtle cumbia, “La Espuma de las Orillas,” and a ballad, “Soy Tuyo,” that was later covered in cumbia villera form by La Liga. And if we go back to the early ’80s, the biggest hit in Calamaro’s career (that has since become a rock en español standard) “Mil Horas,” is better known by most cumbiamberos (especially in Mexico and the US) for the La Sonora Dinamita cumbia version.
So why all the scandal then? Well, always a friend of controversy, Calamaro shot this video (in homemade webcam video style) with a long list of guests hand picked from his personal phone book, including Los Fabulosos Cadillacs’ Vicentico, Dante Spinetta, Emmanuel Horvilleur, Miranda!, Zambayonny, and Spainish-Mexican diva Alaska. But as if that wasn’t enough, he also invited Argentina’s current president’s Cabinet Chief, Aníbal Fernández, who does the opening scene from his actual office in Casa Rosada! And to top it all off, the video was first featured on Mr. Fernández’s personal blog (great way to get attention from the news agencies!).
Watch Andrés Calamaro’s “Tres Marías” video to see who the rocker calls “friends.”