Grupo Folklorico Y Experimental Nuevayorquino Lo Dice Todo

Salsoul Records is well known as a fundamental influence on dance music. To this day, certain styles of house practically insist on Salsoul samples. Less celebrated are the label's outstanding Latin records, which number about a dozen. After starting a small label called Mericana, the Cayre brothers claimed their more famous name from Joe Bataan's Salsoul album of 1973, but never lost sight of the salsa within the soul. Grupo Folklorico was a multigenerational super-group of Latin musicians. Their two albums, the first being Concepts in Unity, were superb statements on the range of possibilities in the music from South and Central America. The Grupo was both an all-star musical gathering and a cultural statement about the maturity of different forms of Latin heritage in the United States. The personnel featured Ruben Blades, the bass and conga brothers Andy and Jerry Gonzalez, and timbale master Manny Oquendo - almost all the players in the Grupo showed up in Kip Hanrahan's Latin no wave experiments of the '80s. The compositions (and their instrumentation) range from Mexican conjuntos to sambas and rumbas. The music is full of twists and turns and betrays a third-stream jazz influence, as in the bent string arrangement to "Corta El Bonche." Out of many great performances, special props must go to trumpeter Chocolate Armenteros and violinist Alfredo De La Fe. Other great Latin reissues on Salsoul include Joe Bataan's Afrofilipino and Cachao's Dos, a must for Buena Vista Social Club Fans. (Outside)