Screw Cee Lo Green; Buika is the real soul machine. Of course, shes not actually a soul singer or even a neo-soul vocalist. Shes not a jazz singer or a flamenco singer. She doesnt do copla (a form of Spanish popular song). Nor is she, strictly speaking, a Latin singer or a lounge crooner. Shes not the second coming of Billie Holiday and isnt all that much like jazz-pop legend Sade. Yet Buika is all of those things.
Though the Spanish songbirds family hailed from Equatorial Guinea, she was born in Palma, Majorca. And its a damn good thing. Otherwise, the world might have missed out on the melding of styles and influences that form Buikas unique spin on the traditional flamenco and copla sounds, imbued with the sultry sounds of soul and jazz. So, no, shes not Billie Holiday. And shes not Sade. But if Billie Holiday and Sade got together for a lesbian encounter under the Majorcan moonlight just once, maybe in college their offspring would be Ms. Concha Buika.
Sat., Nov. 20, 8 p.m., 2010