A documentary on Cimafunk, “Cuba’s 2018 revelation of the year” according to Billboard, is to be premiered on October 9th. The short film directed by James Partridge was shot in 2018, just before Cimafunk’s take off and offers a unique glimpse into the process of becoming a Cuban star
Cimafunk electrifies the Havana music scene with his Afro-Cuban Funk: a unique fusion of Funk and Cuban rhythms, pop and electronic influences. Cimafunk leads us through what makes him; embracing black identity and humble country roots to pushing sonic boundaries or just jamming with his barber.
Making of the Film
Arriving in Cuba for the first time I had no intention of shooting a film there. One night we ended up in a small music venue in the Vedado neighbourhood of Havana. Empty on our arrival, the place kept getting busier, you could feel a real sense of anticipation. A local heard us talking in English and excitedly told us that the guy about to take the stage was about to blow up and that we were privileged to see him play at a small venue before that happened.
Cimafunk burst onto the stage, the crowd went absolutely nuts and we were blown away by the music and performance. Mariana, the film’s producer nudged me in the ribs and said ‘You’ve got your camera with you right? I think you should start shooting, we HAVE to make a film about this guy’.
We blew off all our plans to spend the rest of the time shooting with Cimafunk. Making the film I wanted to capture the infectious energy of Cimafunk, his dedication to the music, the colour and flair of the Havana streets his lyrics speak of and his rural roots in Pinar del Río. Essentially, what makes the man.
The guy in the bar was right, I was privileged to see Cimafunk before he blew up… I also managed to
capture it on camera.
James Partridge Bio
James aims to make documentary films that are bold and beautiful, presenting human stories through a cinematic lens. His love of sub-cultures has led him to make short documentaries on Tokyo’s enigmatic and charismatic Rockabilly culture, Mexican horsemen keeping centuries old traditions alive and the Cuban musician Cimafunk, who’s electrifying Havana with Afro-Cuban Funk.
Additional information: https://jamespartridge.com/