Juanes’s Cuban Peace Concert Draws Protests, Death Tweet

bigger-on-mun2-juanesThe "Peace Without Borders" concert organized by Colombia singing star Juanes has provoked death threats, demonstrations, and old-fashioned record burnings from militant Cuban exiles in Florida. On August 15, Juanes told police that someone had sent him a Twitter message stating, "I hate what you are saying but you will die for defending your right to say it."

The singer, 37, has enlisted top-notch acts including Puerto Rico's Olga Tañon, Spain's Miguel Bosé and Cuba's Silvio Rodríguez and the band Los Van Van for the September 20 event. Miami's conservative Cuban community goes ballistic whenever anyone gives the slightest semblance of support to Fidel Castro's communist government. The exiled Cuban singer Willy Chirino told the Miami Herald, "I love the fact that [Juanes] decided to play a concert for peace for the Cuban people. But if he doesn't want any political connotations, why is he inviting Silvio Rodríguez and Amaury Pérez...two of the most pro-revolutionary artists in Cuba?" Juanes's manager, on the other hand, told the Herald, "There is absolutely nothing political about this show, and like Pope John Paul II who held a service of peace for millions of Cubans...years ago, Juanes' mission is to do the same, but through his music," Maecha said.