By Pamela Wiener, PhD
Gerontologist and Crisis Manager, West Palm Beach Housing Authority

It started with Teresita, age 70, on the recent 12th anniversary of Celia Cruz’s death last week. Teresita’s favorite song of Cruz’s is Cuando Salí de Cuba – When I left Cuba.  Teresita spoke of Cruz’s defiance against the revolution from the beginning.

Teresita and another of my clients, Yolanda, 78, are both fans of boleros. Bolero is a genre of slow-tempo Latin music and its associated dance. Teresita spoke about Beny More, born in 1919, a popular singer with my oldest Cuban clients who are in their 90s. Beny More apparently never studied music but had natural talent. He never left Cuba saying no matter what he was true to his country. Teresita’s favorite song of his is A Media Noche– At Midnight – Life starts at midnight, love starts at midnight!

Yolanda’s favorite bolero singer is Daniel Santos, who was born in Puerto Rico in 1916. You can see he has a completely different sound than More. Here is Un Bolero Para Ti—A Bolero For You.

*PBMTI edit – “El Cante” in on the playlist because “Un Bolero Para Ti” is not on Spotify.

Yolanda doesn’t just listen to older music. She also likes Julio Iglesias and Marc Antony. Her favorite of Antony’s is Vivir Mi Vida –Living My Life . Here is a popular Julio Iglesias song she enjoys from the 1970s: Abrázame – Hug me: Hug me but don’t say a word!

Noemi just got here from Cuba. She is 64. On her way to the United States she lived in Spain where she discovered Marcela Gandara, a contemporary Mexican Christian music singer. Supe Que Me Amabas—I Knew That You Were Loving Me is the song Noemi loves.

Noemi’s Aunt Estrella, 76, loves classical music. Schubert’s Serenade is her favorite. Estrella’s sister Zoila, who passed away a few months ago, introduced Estrella to this music.


Spotify Playlist: Summer Songs from the WPBHA