Archive for the 'Latin Funk/Soul' Category

Ranchera Rock y Frontera Funk

So I’ve been digging through some of the very last 45′s in the KRMX collection (it’s taken like 7+ years) and I recently set aside about a hundred or so records out of the last few batches. The bulk of the records were regional Mexican music that I ended up selling. But rest assured, I still have well over 2,000+ 45′s that hopefully I can re-examine and post at one point. I would like to add that I sold most of the Tex-Mex music in my collection to people who actually live in Texas and I believe I sold some to a music museum in Austin. I’m sure they are in good hands and I’m happy they found a home where the vinyl is super appreciated.

To be honest, I’m not a huge fan of the ranchera or Tex-Mex genres, but every now again I’d find gems like the 2 45′s in this post - great examples of something I’d keep rather than sell. The prerequisites were that they had to sound really good, they had to sound really odd/weird, artists playing music outside of their genre and/or most English/Spanish cover songs. Anyway, Laredo Texas’ Rene y Rene are probably the most popular band in this post and Los Mayans’ do a nice cover of the Mexican folk song “Cuatro Milpas“.

If you haven’t noticed I am posting more than usual - effectively my baseball season is over, so I’m sure you’ll be seeing more posts from me. Go Oakland A’s. Enjoy!

1. Los Mayans: Cuatro Milpas

2. Rene y Rene: Mi Corazon Esta Llorando

70′s Peruvian Funk-Rock with Zulu

Not quite sure how to classify this type of music. In fact, I couldn’t find much information about Zulu for that matter – it seems that the band came and went as quickly as their only self titled release. What I did gather was that the group was fronted by Lima native Miguel Angel Ruiz Orbegozo and that the song “Candela” appears on the Vampisoul compilation “Back to Peru Vol 1“.

I read other articles from Peruvian blogs which weren’t sure of the music’s origin. One author thought it might be Huayno rock (Native Peruvian) and other people argued that it’s possibly Landó rock (Afro-Peruvian). So people in Peru were just as baffled as I am. But apart from sounding like mellow 70′s rock/funk, if you listen to the last part of “Candela“, I can see where someone might think it’s Landó - which is an Afro-Peruvian/musica criolla drum driven form of music. I did find a photo of Miguel Angel Ruiz Orbegozo, but I ain’t even gonna try to determine his roots. Not going there. The music is great nevertheless. Enjoy!

1. Zulu: Candela

2. Zulu: Sueño De Amor

Day 21: Jeanette – Porque Te Vas

Probably the hugest hit for half-Belgian/half-Spanish/English-born/American-raised singer Janette Anne Dimech - aka Jeanette. Initially recorded in 1974 while living in Spain, Porque Te Vas (because you are leaving) became a global sensation when the song was used in Carlos Saura’s 1976 acclaimed Spanish film Cría Cuervos.

This song used to annoy the hell out of me – I first heard it as a cover song in 2002-3 by the US/Mexican indie group Los Super Elegantes (remember them, anyone?). Usually dead pan, bratty sounding females singing in Spanish would make me cringe. But I’m actually liking this song right now – what’s the world coming to? Anyway, Porque Te Vas would go on to be covered by many others bands and even attained cult status in Russia in 1979 - so at least I’m not the only person thats liking this song. Please Enjoy!

1. Jeanette: Porque Te Vas

Day 3: Ron & the Embracers + 1

Ron & the Embracers were a semi-obscure group from East Los Angeles, CA.  That’s about all that I know of them. “Latin Blood” is the A-side to their highly sweated Brown-eyed Northern Soul tune “You Came Into My Life” on Spectrum, and it’s a heavy instrumental complete with nice keys, a reverbed-out guitar and loud horns a la Los Vampiros.  I’ve personally been jamming this out all winter, since it has a nice vibe to it that suits this time of year.  Perfect for a crisp, sunny winter day in California.

Now for the Northern Soul tune.  The horns on this track are what it’s all about for me here, but really it has a lot going for it.  For one, Ron’s voice is like butter over the backing soul music. I’ve never heard of this fellow named Al Maldonado, who apparently produced both of the songs on this 45, but I’d love to hear anything else he had a hand in!

- Adam Dunbar

1. Ron & the Embracers: Latin Blood

2. Ron & the Embracers: You Came Into My Heart

Thanks for the great songs Adam. Be sure to check out Adam’s blog Musica Del Alma - not only has Adam been a guest here before, but he’s the type of guy who’ll come to your house with a bottle of whiskey and bag full of records I’ve never seen or heard before. He is a gentleman and a scholar.

For the last 2 years I’ve been trying to somehow fit the Prime Mates 45 “Hot Tamales” into these February sessions. The thing is, if I put this song into the mix, I am kind of straying Super Sonido’s path of all things “Latin”. But if Alan Toussaint (you can hear him playing piano) didn’t have a production credit or if it wasn’t on the Sansu label, I probably would assume that it was some obscure East L.A. garage band doing this number. Also, to the credit of Mr. Dunbar and the amazing instrumental “Latin Blood”, I would have never thrown up this comparable gem. Nevertheless, this is my blog so I can do whatever I want – Latin or not. Toussaint, the Meters, Art Neville (organ?), fuzz guitar, and hot tamales? I’m sure I can be forgiven. Enjoy!

- Sonido Franko

3. Prime Mates: Hot Tamales Part 1

4. Prime Mates: Hot Tamales Part 2

Texas Flavored Latin Boogie with Brown Sugar

Super rare cut from Eddie Aleman’s Omega label out of San Antonio Texas. It seems that Mr. Aleman was part of the whole Tex-Mex rock/soul movement that arose out of Texas in the 60′s. For the most part, I haven’t had much luck with music on the Omega label, mostly ranchera and corrido numbers – so it was awesome to find this brown-eyed boogie funk track. Not much else is known about these guys, but it appears that Aleman had something to do with the ultra rare San Antonio labels CG Production and Mr. G - all which seemed to have disappeared into obscurity. This one is going in my rotation. Enjoy!!!

- Sonido Franko

1. Brown Sugar: Yo Te Quiero Mucho

I Can’t Stop Loving You – Chucho Avellanet

A great fuzzed out rendition of country singer/song writer Don Gibson’s “I Can’t Stop Loving You”. The song would go on to be covered by the likes of Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, and immortalized by Ray Charles. I think that Pucho and His Latin Soul Brothers even does a version. But for singer Chucho Avellanet, “Jamás Te Olvidaré” scored a massive Latin American pop hit. Apparently he would go on to adapt more pop standards into Spanish on the United Artists label in the 1970′s. Also popular for being a comedic actor in this native Puerto Rico and continuing his success with a string of romantic hits in the 1980′s. From the looks over everything else Chucho has done – it doesn’t get any better than this. Enjoy!

1. Chucho Avellanet: Jamás Te Olvidaré

Tex-Mex Soul With Carlos Guzman

I just got back from Nicaragua which can account for the lack of posts lately (sorry I didn’t dig for any records while there – hung with the family). Luckily for the listening audience though, I’ve been trying very hard to avoid a social life since I’ve returned. To pass the time, I now devote my life on reading, working, playing video games, and going through the tens of 1000′s of 45′s I have yet to listen to. Here is one 45 I found last night. I have no idea who Carlos Guzman y los Fabulosos Cuarto are – but their song El Tren (the train) is totally awesome. Enjoy!

1. Carlos Guzman y los Fabulosos Cuarto

Day 21: Julio Gutierrez – Last Tango in Paris

I’ve been pressed for time the last few days, so sorry I have to poop out a really quick post here for you guys. Anyway, I found this 45 in the KRMX batch I’ve been pulling from for the last 3 to 5 years. But the awesome audioblog Office Naps actually did a really good article on this 45 a while back – you can check it out here. Enjoy!

1. Julio Gutierrez: Last Tango In Paris

Day 8: Two Covers From The Gas Label

The majority of the records and 45′s I own on the Gas label are really bad. It seems that they focused on smaller regional Mexican acts whose prerequisite for getting on the label was that the band had to be horrible. However, every now and again, the label seemed to be keen on allowing cover songs of really obscure US funk and soul music.

The early 70′s Mexican group La Sangre Caliente has had their seminal self titled Lp recently reissued and their rendition of La Culebra was a Vampi-Soul favorite for many years. I actually own their only album, but the dope cover Clarence Reid’s “Till I Get My Share” never made it on that record for some reason. The romantic balada group Revelacion 2000 even gets into the act with a cover of The Spinners “Just You And Me Baby” – they even do a version of “Killing Me Softly” but unfortunately I couldn’t find the 45.  

Anyway, sorry for the short post. I’ve been grasping for material lately. But hang in there, I just have to dig a bit deeper, I’m sure I have more surprises. Please please please Enjoy!!!

P.S. I told you the Packers would win.

1. La Sangre Caliente: No Me Ire De Aqui

2. Revelacion 2000: Tu Y Yo Nena

Day 3: Chicano Funk with Musica Del Alma

Welcome to the world’s best Latin Funk 45 (half joking). This Enrique Olivarez y Los Vampiros record is right from my backyard in Stockton, CA, so naturally I tried to contact the band and get as much info as I could.  The devastating funk track “Al’s Place” is named after the band’s guitarist, Al Olivarez, a tall guy known for jumping right off the band stand during shows and socking dudes in the face who looked at him wrong!  If it weren’t for this guy, Los Vampiros wouldn’t have made nearly as many funk songs.  He wrote the majority of their Latin Funk and Rock output as it turns out.  The band garnered regional popularity not from these funk tracks, however, but for their Rancheras and Corridos.  They even got marginal commercial success in Mexico with their “Hay Amor” hit balada on 45 (also on their Vol 2 LP), written by bandleader Enrique (Henry) Olivarez. 

“Al’s Place” is the obvious winner here, but I also really dig “El Coqueton” for the horn solos and Al’s epic fuzz guitar noodling.  You will only be able to find this second tune on Super Sonido!

Here’s a little backstory on how this record came to be reissued by the world famous funk reissue label, Jazzman from the UK (for the 3 people who care).  I spoke with DJ Shadow about this record and it turns out that he uncovered it in the mid 90s, and eventually hit up the Olivarez family through their now-closed furniture store in Stockton, looking for additional copies.  He brought it over to the UK around ’97 and started playing it at funk nights, eventually catching the ear of Keb Darge who put it on a BBE comp.  It was so popular in funk collector circles that Jazzman eventually released two of their tracks on a 45 and later put one more funk instrumental on their latest California Funk compilation.

- Adam Dunbar

Los Vampiros: “Al’s Place” & “El Coqueton” (Discos Vampiros, 1971)

1. Los Vampiros: Al’s Place

2. Los Vampiros: Coqueton

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wow more amazing Latin-Funk from Adam who runs the Musica Del Alma blog. Adam thanks for the great post and gracing our ears with this gem. If you haven’t been to his site, I strongly recommend that you do - plus there is a great mix he just put up. Since Adam was throwing up some Rancheras gone Funk – I thought I’d take the opportunity to do the same. The only difference is that I know nothing about this group and I have nothing really more to say. Enjoy!

- Franko

3. La Plaga: Sere Feliz

ritmo + sabor = manteca

Just returned from out of town and found this album in my mailbox. I’ve been looking for this LP for ages (I’ve been outbid on ebay numerous times for this one). Also, you may have noticed already that it’s been heavily written about and reissued a few times, yet I still wanted to share it. This album is massive. Really nice b-boy style Afro-Latin funk from Manteca. Reminds me a bit of the Understanding Latin Rhythms song Masacote I wrote about earlier. It should too, since it also has Carlos “Patato” Valdes playing on it. I also read somewhere that Cachao may be playing electric bass on this? What the hell?

Anyway, I’ve been super busy re-working my entire life and it seems to be paying off. Change or whither away. I would really like to get more posts on this site, which is my next goal - and I also wanted to remind anyone out there that they are welcome to do a guest post anytime (unless I really don’t like what you have to offer – but that doesn’t seem to have ever been the case so far). Eamon Ore-Giron & Marcos Juarez please do a guest post, I thought you guys were my friends?

Took this off the Orgy In Rhythm audioblog - I really liked what Bacoso had to say, plus he has a full rapidshare of the entire album. I selected my 3 favortite songs, but the whole entire record is amazing. Enjoy Enjoy Enjoy!

- Sonido Franko

Super heavyweight percussion/descarga session from Pla, plus Patato Valdes and Nelson “Flaco”Padron (Cachao on Bass???). If you liked Puente in Percussion this will blow you away. Just check out the ridiculous breaks on “Afro Funky” and “Cosas De Manteca” to get a flavour of how good this is. Percussionists who were lucky enough to witness Manteca play the bongos with this group, relate tales of an enormous man who could ignite a near riot by simply coming forward from the rhythm section to the front of the stage playing wild rhythms that became more and more complex as the audience cheered him on. Lazaro Pla, known as Manteca, was a master “bongosero” who first rose to fame in 1940s Cuba when he was a featured attraction with the great pianist and composer Ernesto Lecouna and the renowned Cuban Boys, a leading exponent of the Cuban musical wave who gained international recognition and subsequently toured the globe. Although Manteca is found on many recordings originating from Cuba, only a very small amount of material exists of him as a featured soloist or as the leader of a small combo. These famed sessions took place in the United States – Miami to be exact, sometime in the early 1970s. This was a very unique session indeed as two other Cuban expatriates join Manteca in the studio – two of his early admirers who grew up listening to his rhythms: master percussionists Carlos “Patato” Valdes and the amazing Nelson “Flaco” Padron producing these two of the finest examples of incendiary Cuban percussion ever recorded. The remainder of this session’s musicians are unquoted. (I’ve heard it suggested that the legendary Cachao could be on bass but this remains unconfirmed).

- Bacoso

1. Manteca: Afro Funky

2. Manteca: Son Montuno

3. Manteca: Cosas De Manteca

Los Gaiteros De Funk

It’s in the Caribbean coastal region of Colombia where the origins of the cumbia ensemble or the conjunto de gaitas began. However, unlike most popular Latin American music - the gaita was not just the amalgamation of African (drums) and European (lyrics) traditions – but it also fused an Amerindian ( flute) element as well.

Folkloric groups from the Atlantic region of Colombia still perform this early genre of cumbia to this day. Consisting of a very deep sounding drum choir - the bombo, the tambor macho, and the tambor hembra.  Accompanied by some wild sounding flutes: flauto de millogaita macho, and the gaita hembra. It’s this Amerindian sound that the big band style cumbia seems to have removed later on, replacing these folk clarinets (fashioned from cane) with brass ensembles. I partially don’t blame them in trying to modernize the sound, sometimes this form of gaita music can be almost too idiosyncratic to listen to.

With that, I went a step further and included some tracks in this post that blend this traditional form of Colombian music with a more contemporary sound. The results are pretty amazing. From big band cumbia, to funk, to a cover of Rod Stewart’s “Do You Think I’m Sexy”. I can contest, with heavy rotation, that most these songs have been pretty effective on the dance floor. It keeps the people moving and I’m always constantly being asked where this music is from. Anyway, sorry for the lack of posts lately, I’ve been super busy. I’ll try to get some more good music out this month. Like always…Enjoy!         

1. Los Gaiteros De San Jacinto: Magdalena Ruiz

2. Cumbia Siglo XX: Los Esqueletos

3. Pedro Beltrán: Puyalo Ahi

4. Rafael Machuca: La Batalla De Flores

5. La Cumbia Moderna De Soledad: Cres Que Soy Sexy

Neo Boogaloo with Spanglish Fly

I have to admit that when I got the PR kit from a band called Spanglish Fly, I wasn’t to enthusiastic. Maybe I was just turned off by the name or maybe I’m just leery of anything with words that contain latin, soul or bugalu – in a contemporary context that is. Anyway, I’m a horrible man who has the fucked up penchant to judge a book by its cover…and I am sorry for that.

After collecting dust in my office for the last month, I decided to set aside my one-sidedness and actually listen to the 45.  And with all fairness, I was pleasantly surprised. New York City’s Spanglish Fly really pulls off that Ray Barretto Hard Hands era groove that I love so much. You’d think someone would have done this already, right?  In fact, I can’t think of any other group that has tried to embrace that sound today - much like Sharon Jones did for neo soul/funk. So with that I give them credit where credit is due. I really like that they made the effort to press 45′s also – big fan of that. The track I put up is a really low quality MP3, but check out Spanglish Fly at their website and I think you’ll be able to buy their 45 at Dusty Groove soon. Enjoy…

1. Spanglish Fly: Let My People Bugalú

Gal Costa: 1968 to 1974

The arrival of Tropicália on the Brazilian music scene began in 1968 with the seminal collaboration album Tropicália: ou Panis et Circencis. Although this new genre was also embraced by the visual arts community, it was largely seen as a musically driven movement. The key to the Tropicália manifesto was antropofagia, or the cultural cannibalism of all societies. Essentially it was the digestion of all other influences, from all other genres, in order to create something totally new.

Musically it consisted of a fusion between regional Brazilian and American/British psychedelic rock. Also, the experimentation with studio production was another key element . Take the first song Mamãe, Coragem, which I couldn’t record on its own. Most tracks on the Tropicália album segway directly into each other – the whole album is on some Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club trip.

Please know that Brazil was experiencing their third military dictatorship at the time, which lasted from 1964 to 1984. So a new musical movement that rejected most conventions could only be deemed as politically engaging or a form of activism, to say the least. And the Tropicalismo movement pretty much ended with founders Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil being forced into exile in 1971.

It is ironic to think that even though Gal Costa was a big part of the Tropicália movement, she never wrote any of her own songs. Most of her music was composed either by Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil, or both. While the two were in exile, it’s as if Gal became their default artist in their absence.  However, her strength really lies in the way she expressed herself through other composer’s music and lyrics. Gal has the ability to take any genre and turn it into her own. She really captured the movement’s dense lyricism with her voice. Her singing appears unorthodox at times, with unusual time structures, always creating a thin line between happiness and sadness. It’s in my opinion that she is probably has one of the most unusual, original and beautiful female singing voices I’ve ever heard.

Presented here are a few tracks from each album in chronological order. I tried to select songs from multiple genres as an example of what was going on with the movement at the time. I am missing a few of her late 70’s records, which I’ve partially heard and appear to be impressive as well. If you like what you hear, don’t hesitate to pick any album up for yourselves, most songs on the albums given are amazing from beginning to end.  On a side note, popular Forró musician/singer Dominguinhos plays accordion on a few of her records. Forró is a popular regional music from the Northeast of Brazil. It’s almost like Zydeco. I find it amazing that he played and toured with Gal for many years, really a reflection on the influence, longevity and all-inclusive nature of the Tropicalismo movement. Peep the funky track Relance. Enjoy!

1. Gal Costa: Mamãe Coragem + Gal/Caetano/Gil/Os Mutantes: Batmacumba

2. Gal Costa w/ Gilberto Gil: Sebastiana

3. Gal Costa: Vou Recomecar

4. Gal Costa: Tuareg

5. Gal Costa: Com Medo, Com Pedro

6. Gal Costa: Lingua Do P

7. Gal Costa: Acauã

8. Gal Costa: Fruta Gogóia

9. Gal Costa: Presente Cotidiano

10. Gal Costa: Relance

11. Gal Costa: Da Maior Importancia

12. Gal Costa: Pontos De Luz

13. Gal Costa: Barato Total

14. Lua, Lua, Lua, Lua

15. Gal Costa: Flor Do Cerrado

 

Funky Gas: Part 1

I have this running  joke with my homeboy Dj Lengua: that there is either bad Gas or good Gas. Although it might be the flatulent type of gas we are referring to, it’s most likely the Mexican record label Discos Gas. You have to buy about 50 really stinky records in order to find a gem like this. 

For the most part, Orquesta Hermanos Flores’ sounds more like a Mexican party/wedding band. But some member of the group or producer had the bright idea of having them do a funky cover of the James Boy’s “The Mule” (Phil-L.A. of Soul). Check out the Funky16Corners audio blog, they seem to write extensively about the “horse” subgenre of soul/boogaloo. Also check out my other post about the funky track from Los Socios Del Ritmo which I am reminded of.

I’ll be posting other songs I have from the Discos Gas label in the future. So keep posted.

Just wanted to apologize to everyone for the lack of work I’ve been putting into this blog lately. My business has doubled this month and I’ve been extremely busy. Tonight, for your sake, I found some breathing room. I’ll probably be busy all summer, well into September. But I’ll try my hardest to get these quality sounds out to you people. Lastly, I’m going to probably keep the  audio  format the same, it seemed like the consensus was overwhelming. But who knows, I am always down for some change. Enjoy!

1. Orquesta Hermanos Flores: La Mula

Day 18: Tex-Mex Funk With Steve Jordan

So I was just now going through a bunch a 45′s, trying desperately to serve up something for you people tonight. Lo and behold, I ran across this single that was appropriately placed in my “I am confused” pile of Latin 45′s I own. 

Found this joint a while back in the KRMX collection. At first glance, I probably wrote it off because of the name Steve Jordan and The Jordan Brothers. And when I listened, it sounded more like a Southern Baptist revival group being a bit more funky than they should be. Anyway, since I rediscovered it again, I thought I’d give these dudes a second chance by actually doing a bit more research than I had before. Glad I did. It turns out that Steve Jordan (who is also Esteban Jordan y Los Hermanos Jordon) is a Tex-Mex accordion legend who boasts a 5 decade career in the San Antonio Texas area. Not only that but his full length album La Bamba, which this single comes from, is sort of a Northern Soul collectors item. The songs on that LP have traditional rancheras, Bobby Bland covers, to the funkier squeeze box man that I threw up for you people. I even found a Japanese re-issue of it. Weird.

Anyway, some great Tejano style funk/soul ala Flaco Jimenez or Little Joe and Latinaires. Nice sounding Texas rebel-rock with a Mexican influence. It’s gritty and I like it. Threw up an image from some other album of his. Esteban plays a mean Hoener and has a patch on his motherfuckin’ eye yo….awesome!!! Enjoy!

1. Steve Jordan and The Jordan Brothers: Squeeze Box Man

Day 11: Lowrider Soul

I’m not sure if Ruly Garcia and Rulie Garcia are actually the same person. To make things even more confusing, Rulie Garcia is none other than East L.A. Chicano superstar Johnny Chingas. And for the life of me I couldn’t track down my Brown Brothers Of Soul 45 “Cholo“, which I desperately tried to find to stick into this post. Oh yeah, the Brown Brothers Of Soul is Johnny Chingas. So let me clarify a few things. The Brown Brothers Of Soul is Johnny Chingas, who is Rulie Garcia, who actually might be Ruly Garcia. Are you guys following me so far? But what’s in name anyway? My homeboy Ambrosio who is from Mexico must have like 6 different social security numbers and like 6 different names. I guess sometimes its just better to roll with all sorts allias’ whilst living in California.

1. Ruly Garcia y Su Conjunto: Sol Latino

2. Rulie Garcia And The East L.A. Congregation: Que Pasa (What’s Happening)

Day 8: Los Diferentes

Wanted to throw up a few 45′s with musicians who are more or less playing outside their element. With Ricardo Ray choppin’ it up on both the piano and Hammond and Machito droppin’ some big band soul. If I find some time, I will definitely write a post on Ricardo Ray & Bobby Cruz in the future, the 1964 Comején being one of my favorites. In the 40′s it was Machito and his Afro-Cuban Orchestra who borrowed the textures of big swing Jazz bands and created his own version of the mambo, rumba, and cha-cha. And once again he does the same with his soul/funk rendition of Baby I Love You. Still reeling in from Saturday night, it’s what happens when you drink cheap whiskey at 5 am. I have a guest post for tomorrow, so keep posted. Enjoy!

1. Ricardo Ray/Bobby Cruz: Ricardo Ray In Orbit

2. Machito And His Orchestra: Baby I Love You

Day 4: The Joe Cuba Sextet

Leave it up to Joe Cuba to put out one of the most blatantly x-rated songs on the super sonido site. There is no other Latin musician I can think of that exhibits an excessive sexual drive musically and lyrically than ol’ Joe. Even his early 60′s classic Bang Bang or El Pito (the whistle) have some minor form of sexual innuendo. Put you hand on the whistle? Blow?  Please continue propagating the myth that all Latin American men are over-sexed, because whatever you’re doing, it sounds awesome. Amazing 2-sided French pressing. Put it in…….asi se goza!!!

1. The Joe Cuba Sextet: Pud-Da-Din 

 2. The Joe Cuba Sextet: Ooh Ah!

Funky Yucatán Part 2

It comes as no surprise that the region in Mexico, an area of sweltering heat, would be among the first to embrace a new form of cumbia, tropical, and funk in the late 60′s to early 70′s. I’ve actually been to the Mexican state of Campeche (where Los Socios are from) and all I remember is that I had a bloody nose the entire time I was there, due to heat exhaustion and oil refinery production most likely. But, where else do you find descendants of Mayan indians with curly hair playing funk? The Yucatán. Please see my prior post Funky Yucatán Part 1. After 60+ records and a Grammy nomination, it was Los Socios Del Ritmo (the partners of rhythm) that were much more associated with a tamer version of cumbia/tropical and not the hard hitting rhythms I am presenting to you now. I threw in a version of Pérez Prado’s Mambo No. 8++ (a potpourri mix that heats up after 2:30 mins. or so). I just wanted to point out Prado’s influence and popularity at the time, an influence that extends to Norteño, Grupo and Banda in Mexico to this day. Frijol Con Puerco (pork and beans)? Who doesn’t like those?

btw/fyi Mambo No. 8 is a larger file, so watch yourselves.

1. Los Socios Del Ritmo: Frijol Con Puerco

2. Los Socios Del Ritmo: Mambo No. 8, Que Rico Mambo, Mambo Universitario

Bronx River Parkway

I just want to let everyone know that I sometimes get people asking me to review their record or put up their dj mix. I am always happy to help out in any way possible. But as I rule I tend to put up music that stays with in the context of what super-sonido is all about. Plus, it has to be something I really like. So it comes as no surprise that when I received this PR pack for the group Bronx River Parkway, I nearly crapped my pants. Fuck yeah! These guys are awesome. The only disappointing item about all this is that I already own all their stuff, so it wouldn’t be fair to ask for free shit. Damn! Nevertheless, go buy this album!!! It’s already been out for a year. I put up a low grade MP3 of my favorite track (that way no one gets mad at me), but really this whole album stands out.

1. Bronx River Parkway: Aqua Con Sal

BRP_Cover-med

BRP3

The Song:

The second single off Bronx River Parkway’s San Sebastian 152 is a saucy hip-shaker dripping with their signature Latin-funk flavor. These mainstays of Williamsburg-based Truth & Soul are known for a sound and style that stem from authenticity, not imitation. Legendary Sammy Ayala, formerly of Cortijo y Su Combo, leads the group of almost 20 musicians. Ayala brings his recognizable presence to the vocals of “Agua Con Sal” with a sultry style and flair. The minimalist production gives the feel of a live performance, while the polyrhythmic percussion arrangements compliment the classic horn section. ¡Una otra, por favor!

The Background: 

This collective of musicians hailing from both New York and San Juan, Puerto Rico fuse seamlessly to create a flawless combination of Truth & Soul’s classic soul rhythms with the sounds and emotion of indigenous Puerto Rican and Caribbean music. The Hispanic funk jams of Bronx River Parkway’s upcoming album San Sebastian 152 are the perfect example of this synthesis: the record sets down timeless grooves that beg listeners to get down. Among the 20+ musicians of Bronx River Parkway is legendary lead singer, Sammy Ayala, an original member of Cortijo y Su Combo. He has been regarded as “The most consistent figure on Puerto Rico’s musical journey from folk to popular,” according to The Hispanic Information and Telecommunications Network. Ayala brings his trademark energy, stirringly passionate vocals, and floor-stomping performance to San Sebastian 152, which encourages engagement between the audience and performers in both live performances and through their recordings. This, in conjunction with the other talented souls of the orchestra, makes the album a force of nature: powerful, strong, and certain to make you move. San Sebastian 152 will be released on Truth & Soul, a Williamsburg-based modern vanguard of soul and funk, formed by Leon Michels and Jeff Silverman.

Audio Streams:

“Agua Con Sal”

http://media.audibletreats.com/Bronx_River_Parkway-Agua_Con_Sal.mp3

Mega Mezcla album sampler

http://media.audibletreats.com/BRP-Sampler.mp3

“La Valla”

http://media.audibletreats.com/Bronx_River_Parkway-La_Valla.mp3

Video Streams:

Rostarr and Truth & Soul- “Percussive Movement No. 5 -Timelapse”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aR1m-TJA5FY

Rostarr and Truth & Soul- “Percussive Movement No. 7 -Timelapse”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7nduomkqMPs

Bio, pictures, and streams available here:
http://www.audibletreats.com/download/BRP/

Truth & Soul MySpace:
http://www.myspace.com/truthandsoulrecords

Truth & Soul Imeem:
http://truthandsoul.imeem.com

Truth & Soul Official Site:
http://www.truthandsoulrecords.com

Shark Attack Con Los Tiburones

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1. Los Tiburones: La Reina Y La Cumbia

2. Los Tiburones: Descarga Tiburona

I’ve been catching some flack by some other dj’s for letting go of some of my funkier Latin numbers. And I can understand where they are coming from. I understand how some dj’s want some sort of exclusive domain over a gem they found. Maybe it’s to protect their set, I don’t know. But I don’t really care and I never have. As I see it, the music doesnt belong to me anyway and as a dj I always appreciate it when someone wants to know what you’re playing. Shit I even let people pilfer through my crate to peep all my records (as long as they dont look like they’d walk off with it). At least I have someone in the audience actually listening.

With that being said, I’m sure there will be someone in this world upset that I’m giving you this funk bomb from Colombia’s Los Tiburones (the sharks). I just got this album from Mexico and I’m really loving the blend of funk, cumbia, descarga, and gaitero music. It appears to be a commemorative record for Colombian Carnival in 1968 (most likely the Carnival of Barranquilla). A real fusion of Native, European and Afro-Colombian sounds and cultures. Which essentially is what Carnival is all about. It’s like the worlds first ever multicultural event, a party where race and class are mixed up for a time being. Pretty much a reflection of the record itself. 

The album is on the Tropical label (one of my favorites) and has the popular Aniceto Molina on accordion and Duque Palomino singing from Discos Fuentes fame.

Soul-Sided

Soul-sides.com is perhaps one of the top reasons I started an audio-blog in the first place. So to have Oliver Wang ask me to do a guest post really came as a huge honor. Peep O-Dub’s post. We’ll be doing a few guest swaps in the future so be sure to check back. Word! – Franko

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1. Perez Prado: Que Es Lo Que Pasa? From Now (Contour, 1974)

 2. Afrosound: Jungle Fever From Joint (Fuentes, 197?)

3. Luciano Luciani Y Sus Mulatos: Al Ritmo Del Bump From El Hitometro Mag Vol. 1 (Mag, 197?)

One of the pleasures in reading other people’s blogs is using their ideas to spark my own. Maybe that seems a bit unoriginal but honestly, when you have a gazillion songs swimming through your head (or, at least, iTunes library), sometimes it takes a nudge from someone else to remind you, “oh yeah, this other song by them is awesome too.”

That’s what makes reading Super Sonido such a constant treat. Given my ever-deepening appreciation for Latin tunes, I’m constantly learning from sites like this and re-evaluating/revisiting records in my own collection as a result. I guess it’s apropos then that all the songs I ended up picking are, themselves, covers, i.e. riffs on other people’s songs. Everything is connected.

Case in point: I really enjoyed the recent post on Perez Prado. It’s somewhat confusing to realize that there were two different Perez Prado’s recording concurrently (brothers) and that most (though not necessarily) all of the funkier Prado material came from younger sibling, Pantaleon, and not the elder, more famed brother, Damaso. Not sure which brother did Mexico ’70but I’m fairly certain “Que Es Lo Que Pasa?” was recorded by Pantaleon. Now is a UK pressing of the Italian-release of Escandalo, widely admired as Pantaleon’s best work (so much so, it’s been re-released several times over).

Here’s the thing about “Que Es Lo Que Pasa?”…isn’t it basically an instrumental version of Assagai’s Afro-funk classic, “Telephone Girl”? Maybe there were songwriter credits given on the album but if not, that’s a pretty brazen bite. Either way, good stuff with the percussion and a nice bank of complementing horns.

Afrosound is no stranger around these parts though I had scarcely heard half the albums Franko had posted. One round in my chamber of Colombian funk though has been this cover of the Chakachas’ massive smash, “Jungle Fever.” If you were expecting Afrosound to put this through a cumbia conversion, you’ll be surprised to hear that they stick mostly to original script here, even down to the salacious moans of the nameless woman. I wish I had a scan of the cover handy; it’s one of the all-time great Fuentes covers, of a giant joint smoking tantalizing on the cover. Take a long pull…hype.

Lastly, we come back to the August post on the “bump” fad that briefly whipped through Latin music. Heck, I didn’t even realize it was a genre until reading that post but it made me think of some of the Peruvian albums I have, all of which include a variation on the song, “Al Ritmo Del Bump.” I think the best known version is Otto De Rojas’ though I seem to recall Enrique Lynch had his own version too. I can’t be completely sure how much this “bump” has in common with the other “bump” but what I am absolutely certain of is that this song heavily “borrows” from “Soulful Strut” by Young Holt-Unlimited. It’s not a cover, I don’t think, but it liberally interpolates some key melodies from it.

–O-Dub

Domo Arigato Perez Prado

I picked this gatefold up in Tokyo in 2002/2003 and it’s probably one of my favorite Perez Prado records. Every song on the album is pretty much about Mexico. The title track Mexico 70 actually comemerates the World Cup that was held in Mexico that year. To put this all into context, by the late 60′s and early 70′s Perez Prado became a falling star in the US.  However, in Mexico and Japan, he was HUGE. During that time Perez Prado lived in Mexico City (in an apartment off the Calle Reforma), was a regular performer on Mexican television, and toured regularly to Japan. Although the mambo was all but dead, El Rey really puts his stamp on every genre from rock, funk, to the now sound. I left out a great version of Perdiendo Mi Cabeza (Out Of My Head). The songs I selected focus on mostly Mexico. But someone just reissued this on CD. Highly recommended. Thanks to my good friend Julio Cesar Morales for sending me the concert poster image. He actually just had a son he named Prado…. FELIZIDADES JULIO!!!! 

1. Perez Prado: Amalia Y Tijuana

2. Perez Prado: Guada Guadalupe

3. Perez Prado: Mexico 70

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Resize Wizard-1

Juan Pablo Torres

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1. Juan Pablo Torres: Y Que Bien

2. Juan Torres: Con Aji Guaguao

Sorry Fidel, you have to start throwing away your Silvio Rodriguez records. I think Cuban trombonist, composer, and arranger Juan Pablo Torres hasn’t given you anything as funky as this.

Born in Puerto Padre Cuba in 1942, the late Juan Pablo was considered one of the most important Latin music trombonist of his era. Having record with some of the biggest names in Latin music: from Tito Puente to Eddie Palmeri to name a few. He defected to the US in 1992, and like most Cubans, ended up in Florida. Although most of his praise seems to come from that era, these two records from 70′s cuba are worth taking a look at.

L1010320Great experimental mix of Latin jazz, funk, salsa/son and great analogue synth work thrown in for good measure.  Both albums are on the Areito label (which is really Egrem,the Cuban state recording company). I wonder if the vanguard party was upset. These records are just as hard to get a hold of as a box of Cuban cigars. But I’m sure you can find them on Ebay from a Mexican seller.  I put up a photo of both side’s of the LP. The album quality is pretty good, but I’m loving the really janky Cuban graphic designs. Side note, the second tune Aji Guaguaois a spicy Cuban dish.

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3. Juan Pablo Torres: El Manisero

My ex-girlfriend was from Cuba and she always asked me why I didn’t put any Cuban music on my site. So with that I give you Juan Pablo’s take on El Manisero (the peanut vendor) unarguably one of the most famous Cuban songs ever. I personally don’t like it, but I think Torres’ version is the dopest I’ve heard. The song started a global rumba craze in the 40′s and put Cuba on the map musically. Every Cuban that was ever in a band has played this song.

This album also contains the song Rompe Cocorioco which Soul Jazz Records put out on a comp.  

El Bump

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1. Grupo Santa Cecilia: Baila Bump

2. Grupo Santa Cecilia: Yeh Yeah Bump

Summer is usually vacation time for most and during these months my house literally turns into a 3 star hotel for visiting family and friends. I’d give myself an extra star if it wasn’t for the fact that I was so busy and for the fact that I failed to provide everyone (including you guys) with the quality “Franko” service you oh so deserve.

But don’t fret, I aways tend to bounce back stronger and I still have the power to suprise. With that, I give you the super rare triple record BUMP. I forget where I found this one, but it’s been hiding in storage for at least 5+ years.  Looks like this was a concept album for the Mexican Orefon label. There are two bands Grupo Santa Cecilia  and Perez Prado. The third LP is a dj mix of US soul acts from Sonido Negro. The “BUMP” is pretty much like the American version of the Shuffle. Basically the songs/lyrics are teaching you how to dance to the song.  

3. Grupo Santa Cecilia: Mi Nena Baile El Bump

Not much is known about Mexico City’s Grupo Santa Cecilia. Artist, dj, and friend Juan Luna-Avin, who is from el DF, had mentioned that he remembered this band performing weekly on a Mexican variety show.  Which makes sense because that was the same fate Perez Prado had in 1970′s Mexico City. The band has members who later formed Grupo El Tren and Grupo El Final. Either way peep the dope breaks in the first two tracts. Sorry about the first song skipping, I don’t have a clean version. Also, I put the third song up as a bonus, its almost like a protopunk style song. Great stuff.

 PP-Japon

4. Perez Prado: Mambo Bump

5. Perez Prado: Vuelveme A Querer

Leave it to Perez Prado to jump on the Bump band wagon. More go-go than disco, but one of my favorites from the early 70′s King of the Mambo.  The rest of the record is a compilation of his music from that era. Some original and some songs taken from the Mexico 70 lp (which I will put up shortly).

Enciende La Luz

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1. Los Golpes Fuertes: Maria Enciende La Luz

I’ve been really busy with work over the last few weeks, but I am totally looking forward to some free time and possible travel at the end of the month. So if I am getting lazy on this blog, you’ll know why (I still manage to drop super rare and funky Latin cuts mind you)

The only thing you need to know about this 45 is that it was made by Los Golpes Fuertes (The Hard Blows), the song is called “Maria Enciende La Luz” (Maria turn on the fucking lights yo), and that the song heats up around 1:30 into it.

El Ultimo Adiós

Possibly one of the best indicators of a economic recession is when I start selling records on ebay.  Wall Street should use that as an economic barometer of some sorts. Anyway, it was around November when I first drafted this post, business was slow, I was bored, and I had an urge to unload some wax. I tend to slang vinyl when I start thinking I have way too many records or when I am just not that into the music (I usually end up with sellers remorse). Nevertheless, I just so happened to record some of the 45′s that I sold, songs which I was luke-warm with at the time. And the 45′s in this post are a sample of such.

Its a real mixed bag in terms of genres. From Mexican ska, cha-cha, garage, son, salsa ect. ect. I won’t get into much detail about each band, but I’ll let you guys decide if I made a good choice or not.  Please note, that at the time, I scanned the images so small that I am now unable to read them or know some of the artist’s names. Damn I am full of regret today.

  1. Locos Del Ritmo: Donde Vas

locos

 

 

 

 

 

2. Hermanos Carrion: Con Golondrinas

hermanos carrion 

 

 

 

 

3. Los Johnny Jets: Dracula A Go Go

los jonny jets

 

 

 

 

 

4. Desconocido (Los Yonicos?): Guapachosa

los yon

 

 

 

 

 

5. Toño Quirazco: La Familia

tono

 

 

 

 

 

6. Johnny Zamot Y Su Orquesta: Oye Nicola

johnny

 

 

 

 

 

7. Memo Salamanca: Oye Rumbito

memo

 

 

 

 

 

8. Desconocido (Can’t read the name): Viva Tirado

rudy

 

 

Funky Yucatan

L10008531. Chicken Y Sus Comandos: Caminando Despacito

When one thinks of music from the Yucatan peninsula in the 60′s and 70′s the first name that should come to mind is the musical genius Francisco José Hernández Mandujano, aka Chico Che.

Supposedly Chico Che had either formed or influenced bands from all over the Yucatan. Combos like Los 7 Modernistas, Los Temerarios, and groups like Chicken Y Sus Comandos. The influences ranged from regional upbeat Mexican, organ/farfisa grinding funk, and a heavy emphasis on South American cumbia (which for some reason the style of music is generally referred to as música tropical). Chico Che went on to form Chico Che y La Crisis (don’t care much for his music). All very similar to Rigo Tovar’s style of tropical.

Caminando Despacito (walking/strutting slowly) is a funky cover from Eddie Palmeri, whose version is pretty dope as well.

L10008552. Chicken Y Sus Comandos: Cumbia Sampuesana

This song actually doesn’t come off this LP pictured on the left. I have an extra mp3 version which I only wanted to share with everyone. Chicken Y Sus Comandos’s version of the traditional Colombian song La Cumbia Sampuesana shows the direction in which Yucatan groups at the time were taking with música tropical, a fusion of very loud cumbia, funk, psyche and rock. The song really attacks you like a hawk from the sky. Unfortunately most the music from these guys don’t end up sounding like this.

 

*** Please note I amended the prior post “El Zarape” with a new track. Check it out!

Afrosound

l10006931. Afrosound: Caliventura

The Afrosound is Colombia’s reaction to the early 1970′s Chicha movement that was happening in Peru and Bolivia at the time. José María Fuentes saw the popularity of this new type of hybrid cumbia sound and thus created a sort of Discos Fuentes  super group. 

Produced by Julio Estrada (Fruko El Bueno), Afrosound not only incorporated the Andean guitar laden sound, but mixed in some funk, salsa/son, tropical, disco, and afro colombian rhythms to boot. The result being  cumbia party albums from start to finish. These are the kind of LPs you can just walk away from for 20 mins. while you’re djing.

(side note: I think that it is Fruko who is MC’ing for these guys)

2. Afrosound: La Magdalena

I was going to choose the title tract as the second song, which is actually a cover tune from the Andean group Los Mirlos. But I decided on one of my favorite cuts from the album. Afrosound again is putting their own chicha stamp on the traditional cumbia La Magdalena. Here is a good example of how traditional cumbia instrumentation is being swapped for the electric guitar, farifisas (possibly), hoeners, ect. It is a good reflection on how malleable cumbia rhythms can be from past to present and from country to country.

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3. Afrosound: Carruseles

Carruseles (Merry-go-round) is probably one of Afrosound’s more difficult records to find for some reason. And it appears to be one of their most experimental lp’s of the all the ones I will be showing you. I’ve got a hand full of other versions of the song Carruseles and I might put them all up in the future. The Conjunto Miramar and Anibal Velasquez versions are dope. The lyrics to the original song itself are sexually suggestive, but Afrosound’s instrumental is like cumbia/son on an acid trip.

Nevertheless, it’s in my opinion that the tropical sounds mixed with psychedelic guitars would only have made music like this much more affable to the Latin American public, while showing off the exploritory side of a bunch of amazing musicians.  

4. Afrosound: Mi Sonsito

I thought I’d throw in another track off this album. This time with a calypso number. Trying to put in every genre I suppose. Enjoy! 

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5. Afrosound: La Gozadera

6. Afrosound: Onda Brava

Although some records might be harder to find than others, picking up music from Afrosound isn’t that difficult. Unfortunately, the last time I checked, Discos Fuentes doesn’t sell cd’s online outside of South America. However, you just need to go to a good Latin American cd store and one should be able to pick up a full length or compilation cd of their music. Their popularity and influence is broader than we can imagine North of Mexico.

Anyway, sometimes you can actually judge a book by it’s cover. And if this cover is any indication of what the album is going to sound like, then you know Onda Brava (Brave Wave) is going to be a party.

l100069617. Afrosound: Calor

Someone told me that Vampisoul records is supposed to be putting out an Afrosound compilation. Which will be awesome. So if you have a hard time tracking these songs down, those guys always seem to make it easier. Also, I spoke with Beto from Soundway records a couple years ago when they released The Golden Age Of Discos Fuentes. We actually had a discussion about  Afrosound.  I bet they will put them in the second time around.

 

 

8. Afrosound: Tiro Al Blancol1000689

Tiro Al Blanco (slang: awesome, something that is the best) is a cumbia version of Massara’s 1979 Italo-disco hit “Margarita”. This song is probably Afrosounds biggest hit as well.  This infectious number has been covered often and may sound like a familiar sample from a Manu Chao song.

Anyway, these are pretty much some of the best Afrosound records I own from the 70′s to the 80′s. I didn’t have much luck with any of their music after this. From what I understand the group went through many different musicians/producers until they disbanded in 80′s. They do a song called Cumbia Arabe (Cumbia of the Arab) which I’ve heard (it’s great), yet it still eludes me on vinyl.



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