Saturday, October 15, 2011


A quartet of releases in Fania's fantatic El Barrio series – together in this great 4CD box set! Latin Funk (CD1) features, you guessed it, heavy funk with a Latin groove – a wonderful mixing of modes that's completely fresh and unique! Titles include "You Need Help" by Monguito Santamaria, "Identify Yourself" by Cafe, "Dynamite" by Harvey Averne, "I'm Gonna Get To You Yet" by TNT Boys, "Black Dice" by Mongo Santamaria, and "Hot Pants" by Gilberto Cruz. Latin Disco (CD2) shows very different side of the sound of Fania Records – tracks that draw heavily from the club and disco rhythms of the New York scene of the 70s, but serve up the music with a sweet little Latin twist! Titles include "Waterbed" by LTG Exchange, "Dance Dance Dance" by Orquesta Novel, "Salsa" by Louie Ramirez, "Mambo Rock" by Seguida, "Afro Hustle" by Lou Perez and many more. The Bad Boogaloo (CD3) collection does a great job of mixing together some of the key favorites from the classic Fania catalog – and together, the tracks work perfectly to serve up that unique blend of soul, funk, and Latin that was going down in the Spanish Harlem scene during these crucial crucial years! 16 tracks in all – including "Gimme Some Love" by Joe Cuba, "Morris Park" by Lenni Sesar, "Come & Get It" by Ralph Robles, "Bad Breath" by Bobby Valentin, "Mercy Mercy Baby" by Ray Barretto, "King Of Latin Soul" by Joey Pastrana and more. El Barrio (CD4) is a brilliant exploration of the sound of Latin Soul that broke hard in the New York scene at the end of the 60s! The package is equally heavy on the "soul" as it is on the "Latin" – so alongside the expected boogaloo and shing-a-ling styles, you'll also find a fair number of tracks that have a much more soul-based style – a sound that echoes the modes going down in African-American culture at the time, but which comes off slightly different here – thanks to some unusual rhythms, instrumentation, and production techniques! "Do You Feel It" by Joe Cuba, "Big T" by Tito Ramos, "Safari" by Tito Puente, , "New York Soul" by Ray Barretto, "Si Dame Tu Amor" by Cafe, "Musica Del Alma" by TNT Band and more. Source: Dusty Groovve

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