Album no. 15/1001
Tito Puente is Latin music royalty. So much so that he appeared on TWO episodes of The Simpsons, and Sesame Street.
Those kids are loving it.
And that’s when you’ve made it to the big time. Aside from his important cameo appearances, he’s released close to 75 albums – at least that’s what it says on his Wikipedia page. Either way, he’s pretty prolific in terms of Latin music, mamba and the like.
Have you listened to this album before?
CL: All I can think of when I hear the words ‘Dance Mania’ are those amazing nineties compilation CDs filled with rave music. I somehow doubt that’s what Tito Puente and His Orchestra are doing on this album, but I live in hope.
NK: When I hear ‘dance mania’ I think of that weird plague where people would all start dancing and not stop until they collapsed. Which seems INSANE, but apparently it really happened. (I have never heard this album before)
CL: Oh look. They all sounded the same. So I’ll just say ‘El Cayuco’ because it was the first song and I didn’t want to rip my headphones off quite yet. All the songs use that instrument, the fish?
I suppose that’s a pretty cool thing to be proficient in. “Hullo. I’m Gustav, the professional fish player.” Oh I just looked it up, it’s called a güiro. Bit more impressive.
NK: Introducing, on the fish, Gustav! What an instrument. My favourite song is ‘Mi Chiquita Quiere Bembe’, because it was more of a song, with them singing to each other. The first track upset me because the first five seconds sound like the start of a Michael Nyman song, so I had time to get a tiny bit excited, and then it immediately launches into elevator music starring your mate the fish. Gutted (get it?).
CL: I have nothing further to say to you.
When would be the best time to listen to this
CL: At this moment in time, I am hanging out for some regular pop songs again. You know, three minutes, simple tunes, catchy choruses – and it’s making it very difficult for me to really make a decision about when the best time to listen to this would be.
NK: What are you complaining about, we just had Little Richard! BUT, that said, this was very difficult for me to enjoy. Put it on when you have to get from the second to the eighth floor without using the stairs.
Why has this album been included on the list?
CL: I don’t know! I guess it was influential for “world” music? But nobody would listen to this today.
NK: I guess maybe the latin influence? We wouldn’t have had mambo number 5 without him?
Will you be listening again?
CL: No. Oh…maybe if I’m hosting some sort of old-school beach party. Not a cool beach party like Clambake, but an old person beach party. This is unlikely to happen, so I’m unlikely to listen to it again. A lot of this is definitely very similar to Machito and Sabu – so similar in fact that I can barely tell the difference – and I didn’t REALLY get a kick out of either of those.
Out of context youtube comment