Orquesta Gitano, Como Sueno Mi Rumba CD
by Marty Sheller
Orquesta Gitano’s debut CD entitled Como Suena Mi Rumba has a lot of good things going for it.
First of all, the band swings. Listen to the strong rhythm section in Piraguero, with the quinto player pushing everyone to swing harder. Then listen to the hip interplay between bongos and congas in "Como Suena Mi Rumba." Now check out "Sirena" and dig how hot it gets when the rhythm charges under the soulful violin solo. "La Gente Del Barrio" (a guaracha/bomba) shows how to keep the groove going through several different rhythms.
All of the arrangements are well thought out. I especially liked the three songs "Sirena," "Fantasie," and "La Gente Del Barrio." I also enjoyed the trombone solo in "Señora," the violin solo in "Salsa Ahora," the tres solo in "Piraguero," and the soulful guitar in "Fantasie."
The lead singer has a bright future. His emotional interpretation of "Fantasie," his swing in the song "Señora," and his hard-driving approach to "Piraguero" should be noted.
"Salute to Yemaya" features African Batá drums playing traditional rhythms associated with the deity Yemaya — this is real roots music.
Orquesta Gitano explores the rhythms of Africa, Cuba and Puerto Rico from a 1992 point of view, and judging by how successfully Como Suena Mi Rumba has come out, I hope to be hearing a lot more from this band in the future.
[Thanks to White Cliffs Media for permission to use this review — Ed.]