Polo Montañez

Fernando Borrrego Linares, (Polo Montañez) was born in Las Terrazas on June 5, 1955. Songwriter, singer-songwriter and Cuban singer. He became the third Cuban awarded Platinum Record with his first CD "Guajiro Natural", followed by "Guitarra Mía". Author of more than 100 songs, singer of the typical sonorities of the fields; mythical figure for its history and simplicity. Of pure self-taught formation, he made the nightly parties or parties of the place, after the days of work in the most different trades of the earth. The critics recognize the merit of universalizing the most authentic rhythms of the Cuban countryside. His style and rapid insertion in the Cuban musical world, departed from the way he prevailed in the popular taste.

Fernando Borrego Linares was born on June 5, 1955 in the area known as El Brujito. Son of Julio and Lucrecia. His father used to make charcoal so he went from one side of the hill to the other always looking for the way to be near the mountain, his main raw material; He constantly changed his house, which he built humbly with guano ceilings, yaguas and earthen floors.

He lived in the Cañada del Infierno, White House, Finca del Cusco and, in 1972 he occupied one of the houses in the Las Terrazas community. Julio liked music and to invest the limited free time, he joined the group Cantores del Rosario with which they entertained guateques and serenades throughout the hills.

Polo climbed up in a drawer and touched the tumbadora (which was nothing more than an avocado trunk polished with cowhide leather). Soon he began to sing and play guitar becoming the leader of the group. Labor, he had several occupations: coalman, cow milker, tractor driver and cane cutter, among others. He composed his first song in 1973, which he called "Este tiempo feliz", then continued creating, but kept his numbers in a drawer because he did not consider them of value.

Composed with a mixture of genres, like an ajiaco, taking reference to the rhythms that I was getting to know, this way it was forming an own style with themes about personal or foreign events impregnated with peasant elements: The yoke of ox, the smell of coal, aroma of the batey.

Generically, it is ascribed to different types of sones, guarachas or pieces close to the song. This is how he approached a musical examination of the pieces of someone who wrote without knowing how to write the musical notes of his works, so he had to hire a transcriptionist every time he finished a melody, or memorize it in a great effort.

Polo Montañez and his musicians respected the patterns of each genre approached, and presented the musical format as a fluctuating element in terms of the alternate incorporation of different timbres (expanded septet), an aspect that stands out in the orchestrations, where the three have a prominent role.

The use of voices is valued in a positive way, not only in the choirs, but also in the body of the piece, "and space is given to the treatment of the text, in which the use of everyday life is relevant. of affective memory and apparently inconsequential motives ».

Montanez's favorite themes were about romantic relationships, the female figure, artistic popularity.

When the Las Terrazas Complex was founded, Polo and his group began to operate the different tourist facilities of the place, among them the Hotel Moka, Rancho Curujey and the Cafetal Buenavista. In that task, he met the owner of a label and proposed a contract to record several albums. This is where the CD Guajiro Natural was born, of which more than 40,000 copies were sold in Colombia to obtain the Gold and Platinum Records and to be recognized as the most listened international artist.

In less than three years and with only two albums recorded, Polo Montañez rose to fame and became a popular idol in Cuba, thanks, among other details, to its simplicity and to a charisma that captivated. His peasant essence, which he defended even in the most urban places inside and outside Cuba, helped to foster that kind of veneration that they professed him.
The numbers of spectators to their concerts broke all expectations. Thousands upon thousands of children, young people, adults and the elderly crowded the places where it was presented.

He visited Colombia five times, twice, France; He was also in Portugal, Belgium, Holland, Italy, Mexico, Ecuador, Costa Rica. He shared with artists like Rubén Blades, Andy Montañez, Margarita Rosa de Francisco, César Évora, Cándido Fabré, Francisco Repilado (Compay Segundo), Eliades Ochoa, Adalberto Álvarez, Danny Rivera and others.

On November 20, 2002, on a return trip from Havana to San Cristóbal, his car hit a truck in the area known as La Coronela, resulting in serious injuries. On November 26 he died leaving a great pain among all the followers of his contagious music, his work was for the history of Cuban popular music.


Book "Polo Montañez"
Singular book that deals, in tight synthesis, about the life and work of one of the most beloved and authentic creators of Cuban traditional music:

Polo Montañez, the Natural Guajiro born in 1953 and physically disappeared in 2002. Through the testimonies and anecdotes of relatives, neighbors and friends, during long hours of interviews conducted by the author of this issue, it is important information about childhood and youth, as well as about the charismatic personality of this author and interpreter Fernando Borrego Linares. Written by Fernando Díaz Martínez, from Los perros, province of Ciego de Ávila in 1956, who is a peasant farmer, with a degree in History and Social Sciences. He also published the book Camilo por los montes furrowed in 1989 by Editorial Oriente.

Book "Bitter Coffee with Salvia"
Written by the journalist and composer, Marisol Ramírez Palacios, turns to the life and work of the Pinar del Río minstrel. The life of the natural guajiro is recreated as he proclaimed himself. In the book are exposed in an entertaining way, the vicissitudes that had to suffer this singer to achieve success.


• Gold Record in Colombia, for more than twenty thousand copies sold.
• Platinum record in Colombia, for more than forty thousand copies sold.
• Diploma of the Ávaro Obregón Council, Madrid, Spain.
• Illustrious son plate of Pamplona, ??Spain.
• Diploma in Cubadisco during the International Disco Fair, for the sale of the album Guajiro Natural.
• Cubadisco Distinction, for the best sale of copies.

• Gold Record in Cuba for the sales of more than twenty thousand copies.

• Cubadisco Award for the Guitarra Mia album.

• Natural Guajiro (2000),
• My guitar (2001)
• Memory (2004).

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