Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Cannibal & The Headhunters

One of the biggest acts to come out of East Los Angeles, Cannibal and The Headhunters could very well hold their own on rockers and ballads alike. Ballads on this release are "Please Baby Please", "Here Comes Love", I'll Show You How To Love Me" and their cover of The Temptations' "My Girl".
7 out of 10

The Village Callers

A nice package put together by Vampi Soul. Helping keep the Chicano sound alive. Only a couple of very good ballads on this release, "When You're Gone" and "I'm Leaving"
5 out of 10

Ronnie & The Pomona Casuals

I picked this one thinking is would be a straight rocker but was surprised to find a fine ballad in "Slow Jerk". I would have never guessed it by the name. All else is upbeat. "Slow Jerk" made the CD well worth it for me.
3 out of 10

The Premiers

A fine album by The Premiers but the fake live sound brought it down for me. Excellent job on their covers of "We Go Together", "Over The Mountain, Across The Sea" and "Cross My Heart".
4 out of 10

Chris Montez

The Ritchie Valens influence on Chris Montez is well known and heard on some of his rocking tunes on this CD. The ballads with Kathy Young are what drove my need for this CD. Highlights include "All You Had To Do Was Tell Me", "Tell Me (It's Not Over)", "You're The One" and "It Takes Two".
6 out of 10

Ritchie Valens

One of the greatest Chicano rockers of all time, Ritchie Valens is known more for his smash hit rockin' cover of "La Bamba" than the few ballads he recorded. Included in this release you get a couple of very good tracks, "Donna" and "We Belong Together". "Big Baby Blues" is a nice slow instrumental. If you like "Where Lovers Go" and "Duffy's Blues" you will surely like this one.
5 out of 10

Chan Romero

One hit wonder Chan Romero cut a couple of nice ballads that are included in this release. "Memories of You", "Baby Doll" and "I Don't Care" are nice but not great tracks.
4 out of 5

Monday, March 25, 2013

Soul Vocal Groups (The Nights / Thee Dupremes)

I quickly snatched this CD when I first saw it available. Thee Dupremes have some killer tunes in "I'm So Happy", "Your Are My Girl" and "Misery". That alone makes this CD a must.
The Nights count with "Country Girl", "Face In The Crowd" and "Lovers Can Never Be Friends". The sound quality varies.
8 out of 10

Chicanos Explode In Concert

Killer soul with a Latin flavor. The covers by Odyssey, The Vellords and  Freedom Suite are very good. I did not care much for the Malo or the M.C. Blvd tracks but the rest of the CD is very good. A must for your collection.
8 out of 10

Ruben And The Jets

The two complete LP's of Ruben And The Jets courtesy of Edsel Records. The strong R&B/Doo Wop influence is evident in their music. Highlights include "Show Me The Way To Your Heart", "To Be Loved", "Wedding Bells", "A Thousand Miles Away/You Send Me" and can't forget "I Wanna Know". A nice mover in their cover of Speedo". A must for the collection.
7 out of 10


"Together" and "Gotta Find Her" are the highlights for me here. I skipped through the rest of the material rather quickly.
4 out of 10


One and done for me with Malo. After "Suavecito" I found myself hitting the skip button often. Best to find a nice compilation and pick up that track and hopefully get a few more ballads with it. Again I only like ballads so don't let my rating surprise you.
2 out of 10.

El Chicano

70's Chicano music icons El Chicano bring us their take on "Sabor A Mi". The next post features Clockwork who cut an English language version. "Viva Tirado" is a nice instrumental. If you like Santana and Malo this will be a good pick up.
4 out of 10


I picked this one up for "Be True To Me" which is the English version of the classic Spanish cut "Sabor A Mi". The other nice track is "Warming Touch". "Do You Want To Dance" is a slow ballad but I just could not get into in.
5 out of 10

Ralfi Pagan

It is essential for any "lowrider" music fan to have some Ralfi Pagan in the collection. The Ralfi Pagan & Joe Bataan CD has good tracks but the sound quality is poor. The "Come Back Baby" release counts with the title track plus Joe Bataan with "Super Girl" then mostly other tracks we've seen in below releases and the Sweeter Side Of Latin Soul compilations. The sound quality varies a bit here also.
For the best sound quality go for the Fania and Japanese import. Highlights are many, my top picks include "To Say I Love You", "Don't Stop Now", "Make it With You", "Just One Of Your Kisses", "Who's The Girl For Me" and " Loneliest Loneliness"
9 out of 10

The Lebron Brothers

Rare CD with one of my favorite tracks, "Don't Be Afraid". The Lebron Brothers' cover of "Daddy's Home" is also a gem.
5 out of 10

Francisco Aguabella

A very nice tune in "Image Of A Star". "Fantasy" is a bit more uptempo but still very nice. The rest are upbeat dance cuts.
5 out of 10

Ghetto Brothers

A very nice ballad in "I Saw A Tear" by the Ghetto Brothers. " There Is Something In My Heart" is nice but more uptempo. Truth & Soul did a great job on the booklet that comes with this CD in both the writings and photos.
4 out of 10