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Column: Editor's Picks

by Bruce Polin

I'd like to thank Dr. Vernon Boggs for taking the time to contribute our cover story on Latin Doo-Wop. Vernon has proved to be a real supporter of Descarga — especially with respect to salsa in Europe. If anyone out there actually does know who "Melino" is (see Vernon's article), please write us with the information.

From the myriad new releases and reissues that we have received lately, I have picked four titles that you should add to your collection. Manny Oquendo & Libre have brought forth their long-awaited Ahora (TL-12923.10). This New York based band has a hard-core following that has been waiting patiently for this release. Listen to this CD and find out why. Special guests: Joe Locke, Steve Turre, and Milton Cardona. Also, check out El Retorno de Melcochita: Libertad (TL-12925.10). This is a nice production from this veteran salsa singer. Papo Pepín, Louis Kahn, José Mangual Jr. and Isidro Infante add fire to the flame on this one. I keep cueing this one up on our office stereo. Kubaney, one diverse record label, has issued on CD what was available a few years ago on LP, Miguel Cruz y Skins' Noche De Rumberos (TL-12920.10). This CD wastes no time and gets right into a percussive knock-out with the cover tune. This release is a good marriage of salsa and folkloric sounds. Plus, I like the cover. The folks at Faisan have issued on CD the now classic Louie Ramirez & Super Banda (TL-12962.10) with vocals by Tony Vega and Jorge Maldonado. Originally put out in 1987, this release is a smoker with Isidro Infante on piano, Fajardo doing a flute solo to perfection, and features Tito Allen, Yayo El Indio, and Adalberto Santiago in coros.

By the time you receive this newsletter we'll be in the process of having our new Mega-Catalog printed. As newsletter subscribers, you'll automatically get one — so keep your eyes open because it's coming to a mailbox near you soon.

Bruce Polin,


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