Tito Puente – The Latin World of Tito Puente (1964, Mono)

Mambos, cha chas, son montunos, pachangas, Latin jazz… Tito Puente played all of those, and he apparently never liked the catch-all term “salsa” (and he stayed out of Fania Records’ orbit, for the most part).  And he has a point – each of the sub-genres and rhythms (and there are many more than those listed here) have their own backstory and sensibility….

The Balfa Brothers Play Traditional Cajun Music (1967 Swallow Records)

The Balfa Brothers Play Traditional Cajun Music 1967 Swallow Records – LP-6011 Vinyl transcription in 24-bit 192 khz || File sets in mp3, FLAC and 24-bit FLAC I had this record ready to post here long before there was a Cat 4 hurricane bearing down on the bayou.  I’ve been rewatching some Les Blank films this summer, which may be why I felt inspired to share this gem.  The Balfa Brothers were the real deal.  If you are remotely interested … Continue reading

Luis Kalaff y Sus Alegres Dominicanos – Arriba! Santo Domingo (1970)

Luis Kalaff was one of the godfathers of merengue in the Dominican Republic.  His sound took elements of the rural, accordion-based merengue típico and combined it with the style forged by the saxophone-led, big band merengue that came into style during the years of its efflorescence under dictator Rafael Trujillo, who essentially made the style into the semi-official national genre by imposing his taste on the country’s elites (he was from the Cibao region where merengue got its start).

Hermeto Pascoal e Grupo – Lagoa da Canoa Municipio de Arapiraca (1984)

Hermeto Pascoal E Grupo Lagoa Da Canoa Município De Arapiraca Original release 1984, Som da Gente This issue, 1988  Happy Hour Music HH5005-2 Normally, during this time of year, I like to post some forró pé de serra and baião to commemorate the marvelous Festas Juninas I came to appreciate when I lived in the northeast of Brazil.  It’s not as if I’ve run out of vintage forró records to post about on the blog, but I feel I could … Continue reading

Horace Tapscott Quintet – The Giant Is Awakened (1969)

Horace Tapscott Quintet The Giant Is Awakened 1969 original release, Flying Dutchman 2020, this reissue Real Gone Music RGM-1012 Juneteenth is now a federal holiday in the United States.  I don’t wish to take away from the significance of that recognition, especially for those old enough to remember the days of Jim Crow.  But you’ll have to indulge my skepticism about whether this represents a movement toward genuine reckoning and reparations, or whether its a gesture to make white folks … Continue reading

Chester Thompson – Powerhouse (1971) (2021 Black Jazz / RGM)

  Chester Thompson – Powerhouse 2021 Real Gone Music RGM-1202 / Original Release 1971 Black Jazz This is a short (seriously short, only 27 minutes) but sweet LP from future Tower of Power and Santana organist, Chester Thompson.  Not to be confused with the drummer Chester Thompson, who toured with Genesis in the post-Peter Gabriel years and also played in Santana’s 1980’s lineup at the same time as this Chester, which caused this Chester to start using his middle initial … Continue reading