Archive for the ‘Salsa’ Category

Latin Music Heaven

Monday, June 15th, 2009

This post is dedicated to Musica Latina, an amazing all-Latin music store that specialized mostly in vinyl and was located firmly in the heart of San Francisco’s Mission District. A place where I spent many hours in shelf after shelf (ceiling-high) of Latin 45’s, soaking up the artifacts of a music scene that went down on the opposite coast from San Francisco.  Sadly, Musica Latina closed last year and I have been suffering withdrawals ever since.  Expect to see many more posts on Musica del Alma that draw from the great stuff I found there.

The Nelson Feliciano track is a Salsa monster that gets me every time when the horns build back up after the piano breakdown.  Beautiful stuff.  “Delusion” is a perfect example of New York Latin Soul/Boogaloo.

Nelson Feliciano/ Kito Velez- “Me Duele El Corazon”
From the 7″ (Coco, 1973)


Ray Rodriquez & His Orchestra- “Delusion”
From the 7″ (Alegre, 1968)


Cooking with Ray

Sunday, May 17th, 2009

I was laying beside the pool today enjoying the sun and “Cocinando” popped into my head, almost on cue.  The cool vocals, spacey keyboards and ubiquitous güiro licks set the tone just right for this 10 minute plus workout.  A perfect track for all your lazy afternoon needs.  Might just be my summer ’09 grilling anthem!

I also am including “Alafia Cumaye” due to how amazing it is.

Ray Barretto- “Cocinando” & “Alafia Cumaye”
From the Que Viva La Musica LP (Fania, 1974)


Porfi Jimenez- Venezuelan Heavyweight

Tuesday, May 12th, 2009

Walking through the scenic Spanish architecture of the old section of Quito, Ecuador’s capital city, during the summer of 2007 I noticed an aging  metal sign entitled “Bazaar” hanging over a short, sunken doorway.  Upon entering the dark and gloomy room filled mostly with shoes and clothes I noticed an elderly woman sitting on a bench entranced in the making of a colorful handmade textile.  “Tiene algo discos, senorita?” I asked in my then poor Spanish.  “Si, si, si” was the reply I got and she popped up from her bench and pointed beneath the antique wooden object she had been sitting on only to reveal thick stacks of the objects I had been madly trying to track down all morning.   I began to sift through the diverse collection of music, confused at how I could pull out an Alpha Blondy LP, an Eric B. and Rakim 12″, and some random cuban records from the same pile.  Eventually I came across this gem of an album by Venezuela’s Porfi Jimenez, along with some other excellent salsa records.

Born in the Dominican Republic, Jimenez eventually found himself performing and recording in Caracas, Venezuela, where he was a strong advocate of a newly emerging brand of Latin music called Salsa.  Here we focus on his excursion into a funky brand of psychedelic Salsa, with a song called “Echate Pa Ca”.  Love the guitar on this one!

Porfi Jimenez y Su Orquesta: “Echate Pa Ca”
From the El Rico Sabor de Porfi Jimenez LP (Velvet, Ecuador Press, 1973)