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13 July 2008

For your Sunday listening pleasure, master timbalero Tito Puente doing two inspired covers: one of Miriam Makeba's afro-pop hit "Pata Pata," and one of Dave Brubeck's classic "Take Five." Enjoy.
The "Take Five" one is making my day. Thanks man!
posted by BoringPostcards 13 July | 13:21
I always dismissed Tito Puente as a sort of kitchy light music that become hip soley becasue of the lounge craze, not to be taken seriously. But about 10 years ago Mrs Slack was on a Tito kick and picked up several TP CDs and i was floored at how damn strong the songs were. I've been a fan ever since and felt a little bad that I had dismissed him before giving the grooves a fair shake.

And I'll second BP- that "Take Five" really swings!
posted by Slack-a-gogo 13 July | 14:28
Slack, for some reason I've always had a taste for salsa music* and it was only amplified by the couple of years I spent in Miami, where most of my friends and co-workers were Cuban or Dominican, and Tito was always serious business. When i was a college freshman, he played a free show at the Amsterdam Avenue Street fair on 81st street that drew a huge crowd. When he played 'Oye Como Va,' ...well, lets just say I've never seen a crowd undulate as one like that before or since.

*I won't say 'Latin Music.' That's a white people's term. Salsa and Merengue have about as much in common with Mexican music or Argentinian tango as hip-hop does with country or big band jazz. Just because it's in the same language dosen't mean it's the same stuff.
posted by jonmc 13 July | 14:46
Great story from my Miami days: the computer stor I worked at had a New Years Eve party, and during most of the night they played hip-hop and heavy metal, but as everybody got more lubed up, they dragged out the merengue records. When they did, my friend Marco drageed his sister out on the floor and danced up a storm. Me and Pips watched in amazement. I told him afterwords 'Wow, you can really cut a rug.' He shrugged with affected modesty, 'I am from Santo Domingo.'

Rock on, man.
posted by jonmc 13 July | 14:49
Here are a couple Mongo Santamaria songs you might enjoy: 'Afro Blue,' which Mongo wrote, but was made famous by John Coltrane; and 'Cold Sweat,' the James Brown number.
posted by box 13 July | 15:01
Thanks Jon. I heart Take 5 and this version is totally awesome. Perfect for a Sunday afternoon of writing at work.
posted by special-k 13 July | 17:03
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