“And keep talking sh*t, I can’t hear you/ Foolish words, deaf ears,”La Dame Blanche spits out – singing in Spanish firmly and fiercely – to crown each verse of that Afro-Cuban funky bombshell that is “Oídos Sordos”. This is the song that the Cuban artist based in Paris just recorded and released with us here at Tigre Studios (stream now). And it’s a resounding musical commitment to her performance, with a significant extension of the band that usually supports her on stage. All her magic that we are used to, but now much more powerful.
“It was a fantastic idea from Tigre Sounds,” begins Yaite Ramos, better known by her alias La Dame Blanche, to explain how “Oídos Sordos” arose and took shape. “I’ve had the joy of sharing this recording with these high-level Cuban musicians. The process was almost a clairvoyance: I sent them the music beforehand and we met playing and enjoying that meeting of pure groove. I’m so grateful!”
The performance definitely makes a difference: it’s the perfect energy for this passionate frontwoman to bring out her sharp flow between singing and rapping, and confirming her great skill with the flute during the intro and the bridges. Unlike previous works, Yaite states that the intention of giving “Oídos Sordos” more combustion was quite deliberate. “In the beginning, yes, I wrote to achieve this sound, but these musicians exceeded my dream. God willing one day they will be part of my band,” she says with a laugh.
A singer and multi-instrumentalist, La Dame Blanche has been working for years with producer Marc “Babylotion” Damblé, who also takes on a live-role playing guitar and triggering loops and electronic sequences when the band’s format is smaller. “Marc is the translator of my musical desires,” tells Yaite, and immediately adds how they conceived this song. “He made the beat from a bass line, some brass, and rhythms that I sent him.”
“Oídos Sordos” shows La Dame Blanche at her most fiery side, with fair doses of hip-hop, over a funk-fueled base. It has colossal instrumental breaks and peaks, with even some jazz-rock. Here there’s no time to flirt with reggae and other Afro-Latin rhythms that usually give balance and sensuality to her songbook. It’s a song with its history, rescued especially for this recording. “After thinking about it for a while, I asked myself: what can I use to honor this occasion in Tigre? ‘Oídos Sordos’ is one of those songs that is shouted from the rooftops, that I wrote between work and home. Babylotion opened the safe and pulled out this song that we had only played live and I thought it was fantastic.”
Born and raised in Pinar del Río, the westernmost province of Cuba, La Dame Blanche grew up in a very musical family, especially influenced by her father Jesús “Aguaje” Ramos, a trombonist and director of the Buena Vista Social Club orchestra. “I receive this legacy with great pride, I’m very proud of my family,” says Yaite about her roots. Of course, it’s also about making her own path. “I also wanted, in my own way, to add a grain of sand to this family of giant musicians.”
We’ve been waiting for La Dame Blanche at Tigre Studios for a while. And we’ve been following her for quite some time, especially since the first singles from her 2020 concept album Ella began to reach our ears. Those heartfelt songs, with multicolored rhythms and empowering lyrics, placed her on our list of female powerhouses that inspire Tigre. The recording of “Oídos Sordos” comes right at an excellent stage of her career. “I’m living beautiful moments, with a reactive public and people who identify themselves and sing my songs,” she says. “I’d say that I’m at my best, wanting to make a lot of music and hold concerts, I have much more to give at all levels.”
You can stream “Oídos Sordos” on all platforms here.