Friday, March 30, 2007


I don't know jack about salsa. It's one of the big gaps in my musical self-education; I think I've probably heard more polka songs than salsa songs. But that's about to change, in a big way. I just got a serious hookup today, courtesy of the PR firm that handles Emusica's reissues of the Fania Records catalog: a box containing 27 of said reissues, and three 2CD compilations by names even I recognize as huge in the genre. Here's what landed in my lap (almost literally) today:

Ray Barretto, Aqui Se Puede
Ray Barretto, Irresistible
Ray Barretto, Que Viva La Musica (2CD compilation)
Joe Battan, Riot
Justo Betancourt, Pa Bravo Yo
Willie Colón, El Malo
Willie Colón, Lo Mato
Willie Colón, The Player (2CD compilation)
Willie Colón & Ruben Blades, Siembra
Celia Cruz & Tito Puente, Homenaje A Beny Moré
Celia, Johnny, Justo & Papo, Recordando El Ayer
Fania All-Stars, Live At The Cheetah Vol. 1
Cheo Feliciano, Cheo
Cheo Feliciano, Estampas
Hector Lavoe, Comedia
La Lupe, Es La Reina
La Lupe, Reina De La Cancion Latina
Johnny Pacheco, Pacheco Y Su Charanga
Johnny Pacheco, El Maestro (2CD compilation)
Charlie Palmieri, El Gigante Del Teclado
Eddie Palmieri, Eddie Palmieri
Eddie Palmieri/Cal Tjader, Bamboleate
Tito Puente & His Orchestra, Ce' Magnifique
Ricardo Ray & Bobby Cruz, Aguzate
Ismael Rivera, De Todas Maneras Rosas
Pete "El Conde" Rodriguez, El Rey
Roberto Roena, Roberto Roena Y Su Apollo Sound 6
Adalberto Santiago, Adalberto
Sonora Ponceña, Future

So far, all I've listened to is the Willie Colón disc (another copy of which arrived, all by itself, a few days ago), but it's pretty great. I remember being vaguely annoyed by salsa's piano sound some years ago, which led me to shrug off the genre. But now it doesn't bother me, for some reason. And the horns have a gleam that blows me away, no pun intended. So I'm actually really looking forward to checking all this stuff out, even if it takes me the rest of spring and summer. (And the Fania folks say they're going to keep sending more reissues, as they release them! It's a never-ending stream of salsa for me, it seems, at least for the near future.)


Betty said...

Here are a few good ones to start with. Enjoy! :)

Brant Lee said...

damn! I need that hook up! hahaha. so who @ Rogers & Cowan do I need to talk to? I'm gonna call them tomorrow! Oh...I also have a ton of other records up. Come and check me.

¿Revolucion, No?