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Los Seneros: The Voices of Fania

Los Seneros: The Voices of Fania

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 3.5 out of 5

LOS Soneros: The Voices of Fania is the latest offering from the Fania Records label that puts forward a selection of their best loved vocalists, from Eddie Palmieri and Hector Lavoe to Ruben Blades and Tito Allen.

Fania Records is, of course, a New York based record label founded by Johnny Pacheco (a musician) and Jerry Masucci (a lawyer) in 1964 to promote what Latin American music and Salsa. It was responsible for launching the careers of some of the greatest iconic figures in the history of Latin music, including Palmieri and Ray Barretto.

This latest compilation, which forms part of an extensive release of Fania recordings, puts together a number of lively hits from the era, that encapsulate the Latin American passion, its swing, bravura and feelgood danceability.

Highlights include Busca Lo Toyu, the Eddie Palmieri offering that gets the party started, Sonido Bestial by Richie Ray and Bobby Cruz, which features an intoxicating blend of brass and piano, and the almost cinematic Mujer Ingrata, featuring the combined talents of Johnny Pacheco and Pete “Conde” Rodriguez.

The lush acoustic strings and lively brass of No Te Voy A Dejar Ir provide the perfect backdrop for Ismael Miranda’s cheery vocal style, while Ruben Blades contributes a nicely romantic offering in the form of the gorgeous La Mora.

The most notable thing about listening to any of Fania’s releases thus far, however, is just how invigorating they can be. Latin American music contains a real zest for life, love and dance that shouldn’t fail to have you dancing. It effortlessly banishes the blues away and puts you into a party spirit.

So, while this compilation isn’t the most essential of the releases thus far and occasionally sounds a little too same-y (Ray Barretto’s Latin Soul Man is our choice pick of the moment), it’s a fine collection that puts forward several artists you may wish to find out more about.

Download picks: Busca Lo Tuyo, No Te Voy A Dejar Ir, La Mora, Moti-Agua, Las Leyes

See also: Eddie Palmieri’s La Perfecta Orchestra Sugar Daddy

Ray Barretto – Latin Soul Man

Track listing:

  1. Busca Lo Tuyo – Eddie Palmieri
  2. Paraiso de Delzura – Hector Lavoe
  3. Raices – Celia Cruz + Sonora Poncena
  4. Sonido Bestial – Richie Ray + Bobby Cruz
  5. Por La Primera Vez – Jimmy Sabater
  6. Mujer Ingrata – Johnny Pacheco + Pete “Conde” Rodriguez
  7. Los Pequenitos Del Son – Santitos Colon + Menique
  8. No Te Voy A Dejar Ir – Ismael Miranda
  9. Cuando Tu Quieras – Chivirico Davila
  10. Justicia – Eddie Palmieri + Ismael Quintana
  11. La Mora – Ruben Blades
  12. Moti-Agua – Ismael Rivera
  13. Ay Caray – Adalberto Santiago
  14. Las Leyes – Justo Betancourt
  15. El Embajador – Tito Allen