The funky jazz group Manteca formed in Canada around 1979. Members of the large formation included percussionists and drummers Charlie Cooley and Matt Zimbel, trumpet men Rick Tait and Steve McDade, percussionist and banjo picker Art Avalos, bassist Henry Heillig, saxophonists John Johnson and Phil Dwyer, and keyboardist Gordon Sheard.
Manteca recorded its debut album, Fusion, in 1981. It was followed a year later by a self-titled sophomore released under the Ready Records label. One album after another appeared from the group over nearly the next two decades, such as Strength in Numbers in 1984, No Heroes in 1986, Fire Me Up in 1988, Later Is Now in 1992, and No Net in 1996. ~ Charlotte Dillon