Personnel includes: Ruben Blades, Adalberto Santiago, Hector Casanova, Ada Chabral, Nancy O'Neill, Luis Angel Silva "Melon" (vocals); Johnny Pacheco (vocals, flute, percussion); Hector "Bomberito" Zarzuela, Jon Faddis, Randy Brecker, Louis "Perico" Ortiz (trumpet); Reinaldo Jorge, Wayne Andre, David Taylor (trombone); Joe Farrell, Eddie Daniels (flute); Gloria Agostini (harp); Louie Ramirez (vibraphone); Bob James (Fender Rhodes, piano); Papo Lucca (piano); Ken Ascher (keyboards); Eric Gale (guitar); Bobby Valentin (bass); Rick Marotta (drums); Mongo Santamaria (congas); Patti Austin.
Strings: Lamarr Alsop, Seymour Barab, Arnold Black, Alfred Brown, Harry Cykman, Jean Dane, Max Ellen, Paul Gershman, Emanuel Green, Diana Halprin, Harold Kohon, Charles Libove, Charles McCracken, David Nadien, Matthew Raimondi, Richard Sortomme, Louis Stone, Gerald Tarack, Emanuel Vard.
Reissue producer: Didier C. Deutsch.
Recorded at CBS Studios and Media Sound, New York. Originally released on Fania (PC 34711). Includes liner notes by Didier C. Deutsch.
All tracks have been digitally remastered.
This is part of the Columbia Jazz Contemporary Masterpieces series.
Personnel: Johnny Pacheco (vocals, flute, percussion); Papo Lucca (piano); Bobby Valentín (bass instrument); Mongo Santamaria (congas); Roberto Roena (bongos, percussion); Nicky Marrero (timbales).
As part of Bob James' Tappan Zee Records agenda, house producer Jay Chattaway was handed the Fania All-Stars, no doubt with instructions to make a hit record with them as he did with Maynard Ferguson that year. So he did -- with a little help from James on electric piano, other New York studio experts like Eric Gale, Randy Brecker, John Tropea, Joe Farrell, and Jon Faddis, and, as an integral part of the All-Stars, Mongo Santamaria. The results are not at all bad, nor irredeemably diluted. Sometimes the crisp outboard brass section, voices and strings intrude on the action, and the disc was made in layers, as opposed to herding the band into the studio for a day and letting them wail. But in most instances, the Latin rhythm section of Santamaria, Nicky Marrero and Roberto Roena is permitted to dictate the direction and feel of the sessions -- and that gives this CD the vitality that Santamaria's own album with Chattaway two years later (Red Hot) lacked. ~ Richard S. Ginell
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