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La Charanga Soy Yo

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Album Review

It is impossible to talk about La Charanga Forever without discussing the infamous timba group Charanga Habanera, the band which fathered Charanga Forever, David Calzado's Charanga Habanera, and Dany Lozada y Su Timba Cubana. After their oft-discussed 1997 breakup, former Charanga Habanera members including bassist/bandleader Pedro Pablo Gutierrez pooled their creative forces in an attempt to capitalize on their former band's immense momentum, and Charanga Forever was the product. Two years after their official establishment in 1998, they released an album of new timba material, La Charanga Soy Yo. Though they were in competition with two other groups who claimed to be the true heirs to the Charanga Habanera throne, Gutierrez and Charanga Forever were successful in their pursuits, and are still a staple in the Havana timba scene. The disc is chock-full of fresh arrangements and pleasing melodies. The sound has a slightly smoother edge than their former incarnation. It seems that in the great divorce, David Calzado took all the "badness" with him. The rhythm and percussion sections seem to have abandoned aggressiveness in favor of groove and swing. Similarly, the vocal approach of Mario Jimenez, Sandier Ante and Armando Cantero is more subtle and classy. Though all in all a good record, it is not a surprise that rabid, wild timba of Havana got behind Calzado to supply their clave-driven-insanity. ~ Evan C. Gutierrez, Rovi

La Charanga Soy Yo, Charanga Forever
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  • $18.99
  • Genres: Latino, Music
  • Released: 01 January 2000

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