A Masterpiece from 1967 never been relist until today.
Review by: rubber city
We’ll kick things off with a notable offering from Rocafort Records: the long-lost recordings of The Nitty Gritty Sextet. The lineup included some of the greatest names in Latin music – Tito Puente, Charlie Palmieri, Louie Ramirez, Jimmy Sabater, Bobby Rodriguez, Willie Torres… How did this thing end up sitting on the shelf for 48 years?
“We wanted to license two tracks by The Nitty Gritty Sextet for a 45 release, so we contacted legendary Latin producer Bobby Marin,” said the label’s co-owner, Phillipe Rocafort. “Much to our surprise, we were told by Marin the songs Something New and Nitty Boo-Boo were part of an LP recorded in 1967 that had never seen the light of day. The bad news was all of the masters beyond those two tracks had been lost.”
Against all odds, vinyl collector Chris Bade found the only known existing acetate of the LP last year in a Pennsylvania thrift store (this is what crate diggers live for, folks!). Following a careful cleaning of the fragile, lacquer-over-aluminum record, Rocafort and company created the master and scheduled the album’s release for May 18. The deep and well-preserved grooves within are a welcome addition to any respectable boogaloo collection:
Here’s a fast-paced mambo that celebrates a basic staple of the era, Bambu rolling paper (with Puente on vibes and Sabater on timbales):
Against all odds, vinyl collector Chris Bade found the only known existing acetate of the LP last year in a Pennsylvania thrift store (this is what crate diggers live for, folks!). Following a careful cleaning of the fragile, lacquer-over-aluminum record, Rocafort and company created the master and scheduled the album’s release for May 18. The deep and well-preserved grooves within are a welcome addition to any respectable boogaloo
Marin and his brother Richard formed the sexted in 1967 following the breakup of boogaloo master Joe Cuba’s band. “We kind of copied their style and instrumentation,” said Bobby, who composed all of the album’s songs except the Ramirez-penned Dixie’s Mambo. The LP was recorded at Richard’s studio in NYC… Not sure how it ended up in a lonely record bin in PA, but kudos to Bade and Rocafort for unearthing this great artifact from the glory years of boogaloo.
So that record sent me into a full-blown Latin soul jag. Here are a few other tunes that pinned my ears back during a recent outdoor listening session con muchas cervezas.
As the Cavs fight their way through the second round of the NBA playoffs, it seems only appropriate to feature a tune by The Lebron Brothers (sorry, can’t think of a cheap way to pay this off, other than mention they both have records with the name Lebron on them). Fame may have eluded the five Puerto Rican siblings featured on this cut, but they certainly recorded some of the best Latin soul you can find from the late Sixties/early Seventies. I pulled this tune from an outstanding 15-song comp, Fania Latin Boogaloo Essentials. A rare example of truth in advertising
Band personnel: Willie Torres, Manny Roman, Rudy Calzado, Bobby Marin, vocals; Jimmy Sabater, timbales & coro; Bobby Rodriguez, bass; Louie Ramirez, arrangements, vibes & keyboards; Charlie Palmieri, tambourine, keyboards; Ricardo Ray, keyboards; Ozzie Torrens, congas; Tito Puente, hand percussion. Willie leads on 6 out of the 10 tracks