Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Joe Bataan - King Of Latin Soul (2009)

Artist: Joe Bataan
Title Of Album: King Of Latin Soul
Year Of Release: 2009
Genre: Latin / Jazz / Funk
Format: MP3
Bitrate: VBR ~200 kbps
Tracks: 12
Total Time: 47:28 min
Total Size: 67 MB
WebSite: joebataan.net


01. Subway Joe (3:31)
02. Mestizo (4:48)
03. The Bottle (4:02)
04. Johnny's no good (4:17)
05. Special girl (2:45)
06. Rap-o-clap-o 2008 (4:27)
07. Latin soul square dance (3:56)
08. I wish you love (4:35)
09. Gipsy woman (3:33)
10. Puerto rico me llama (4:12)
11. The prayer (4:29)
12. It's a good feeling (riot) (2:45)

- Clique Aki:

Joe Bataan is like the CD title says, "King Of Latin Soul". The Afro-Fillipino singer, born and raised in Spanish Harlem, New York, was as tough as his neighbourhood. His two loves were his gang and music. The music of Harlem split into two -West Harlem was African-American soul/funk/rhythm & blues/doo-wop, East Harlem was Cuban and Puerto Rican. In the 1960s, Joe alongside a host of 2nd generation Latinos, loved equally soul, funk and rhythm and blues AND mambo, guaguanco and guaracha. It was inevitable that a new US latin sound would emerge that fused these different genres, and that sound was latin soul, eventually becoming boogaloo (or bugalu). Joe Bataan was right there at the start, recording for Fania Records in 1967, until 1973, then as latin soul and bugalu became latin funk and latin disco, he switched to Mericana Records, which became the legendary disco label Salsoul Records. The rest is history.

This new CD is Joe re-recording all his big hits with Spanish rare groove band Los Fulanos and its on Madrid funk/soul label Vampi Soul. If you like Joe Bataan or latin soul or latin disco, buy it. Its good. The band are kicking, Joe's voice is still strong (though wobbles on a couple of tracks), and the production is BIG! The new versions of classics are excellent - "Subway Joe" sounds almost as good as the original, as do "Mestizo" and "Gypsy Woman". He does a good version of "The Bottle", which is a vocal unlike his mid-70s instrumental "La Botella" hit. There's a kicking salsa-jam, the uptempo "Puerto Rico Me Llama" - nice descarga. I was well impressed by the whole CD - Joe Bataan, the punchy arrangements, the firing band, the excellent crisp production. Like the title says, Joe Bataan is still "King Of Latin Soul".

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