“Listen – Joe Bataan – Latin Strut – MP3″
“Listen – Deodato – Super Strut – MP3″
I hope the end of the week finds you well.
I stand before you on the cusp of some major (I think positive) changes in my life. I won’t go into too much detail today, on account of not having a whole lot of time today, but I will explain at length come Monday. Rest assured that these changes should not affect the blog(s) in any negative way. If anything the supply of good vibes is likely to expand.
That said, I’ve enjoyed serving up the sizzling Latin soul this week, and the tune I’ve held for last is a banger.
Though this was the ‘Week of Boogaloo’, today’s selection falls far outside that time period. Though not technically ‘boogaloo’, it is certainly Latin soul, so my hope is that once you pull down the unos y ceros you’ll dig the connections (and the tune).
As I’ve said before, I’m in no way an expert on Latin sounds, but I am a big fan. My Latin crates aren’t particularly deep, but I like to think that they contain a fair amount of quality. I’m always on the lookout for new stuff (not “new”, but new to me), and today’s selection is a fairly new addition to the Funky16Corners arsenal.
Last year, thanks again to a sale list from my man Haim, I happened upon a copy of Joe Bataan’s ‘Latin Strut’. This is one of those records that I’d never heard, but certainly heard about for a long time. As soon as I checked out a sample, I slapped down the semolians and before long the disc found its way through the mail slot and the air in things at the Funky16Corners compound were a little bit groovier.
Joe Bataan is one of the major movers and shakers of Latin soul, from the early years of boogaloo and coining the term Salsoul in the 70s.
It was on the album bearing that title in 1974 that he dropped today’s selection, ‘Latin Strut’.
Now, if you’re a regular reader of Funky16Corners, you know that I’m the kind of nut who spends at least as much time reading record labels as I do spinning the records. Oddly enough, I gave ‘Latin Strut’ a grip of spins before I stopped to scan the label, so imagine my surprise when I look under the song title expecting to see the words ‘Joe Bataan’, and instead the name Deodato pops out at me.
“Huh?”, says I, seconds before I set to Googling and discovered that ‘Latin Strut’ was in fact a cover of a Eumir Deodato tune entitled ‘Super Strut’. Naturally, it wasn’t long before I grabbed a copy of the OG (it was but a pittance) because I couldn’t very well tell this particular tale without including both 45s.
Deodato’s original is certainly “Latin” in it’s conception, if a tiny bit jazzier with the Rhodes laid on thick (which is cool). Joe Bataan cranks up the Latin percussion, amplifies the tempo a touch for the dancers and opens things up with a very sweet flute solo. It also helps that about two thirds of the way through ‘Latin Strut’ there resides a very nice drum/bass breakdown.
Though apparently (according to the excellent book ‘Love Saves the Day’) ‘Latin Strut’ didn’t make a big impression on the Latin audience, it should come as no surprise that its pre-disco vibe was a major hit on the dance floors of New York City.
I hope you dig the records, and I’ll be back on Monday with something nice.
Have a great weekend.