Roger Miret of Agnostic Front on Touring Cuba

Photo Credit: Silvy Maatman (via Facebook)

Photo Credit: Silvy Maatman (via Facebook)

New York hardcore godfathers Agnostic Front have taken their sound around the globe and spread their music around to a wide variety of audiences. While many have experienced their music and lifestyle, there is one specific country that has set on frontman Roger Miret’s mind – his motherland of Cuba.

He shared his thoughts on the matter:

Absolutely! I was born in Cuba and I just became a citizen in 2006. There is a band called Arrabio and we’ve played a bunch of shows with them in Canada. They’re a Cuban band who plays in Canada. Two years ago I got them to play the Black N Blue Bowl in New York, which was pretty amazing. A hardcore band from Cuba to come to New York City to perform and then go back – that’s unheard of. It’s a shame they didn’t get the publicity they should have gotten or nobody would have cared unfortunately.

They had invited us to go to Cuba. We did all of the paperwork and I sent it into the Department of Treasury. That’s where we had sent all of it to, about two years ago. We were supposed to play a special show in the city that was 500 years old. We were looking forward to it but we sent in our paperwork eight months prior to the show and fast forward four months after the show, I got an email – I still have it saved…and it said ‘we’re reviewing your request here but your date has passed. So there’s no need to move forward with this.’ That was it.

You had eight months to do this and four months afterwards…how many people do you think are trying to go to Cuba? So I left that alone, but it’s a dream of mine to go to Cuba, where I was born to perform and play, and from what I understand, we have a lot of fans out there who know I’m Cuban born. It will be amazing. Hopefully we can make that happen.

Roger Miret of Agnostic Front. Photo Credit: Todd Huber (via Facebook)

Roger Miret of Agnostic Front. Photo Credit: Todd Huber (via Facebook)

Miret shared his thoughts on the changing tides on the US-Cuba relations, and where things could shift towards following bettering diplomatic relations between the two countries, and how that impacts him personally.

I see all of the relations going on right now, opening the gates, which is really cool, but I hope it works not just for the Cuban people [and] it’s not just a political gain on both sides – the Cuban government or the American government. I predict there will be a McDonalds in Cuba pretty soon – give it a year. I hope it works for the people. I see there’s a lot of anger in America, especially Miami, where a lot of the Cubans who left Cuba like my whole family, just because they didn’t believe in the government’s regime and Castro – whatever that’s cool. They had to leave. I left. My family left…whatever.

The mother’s side is all still there. My father’s side is the one to come to America. But now the crazy thing is they all want to claim their property, all of their stuff back. It’s making it harder. All I have to say to that is I understand but what about the people living in the houses that you left and abandoned to come to America in search of liberty and justice and freedom. Do you think it is right to throw them out into the street? So that’s what my big question is. People need to be humanitarians first. Everybody’s so greedy. It’s always about materialistic stuff. Let’s think about the people and let’s hope that it’s a good thing for the people.

I read an article a year ago in Time Magazine or LIFE that the Cuban population is dying off because there was no hope and people don’t want to have children. There’s nothing worth it for them to have children. Funny thing is eight months later the gates are opening up. So it’s giving the people hope. Let’s see if it works out.

By Rei Nishimoto