All Hopped Up and Ready To Go: More Mambo Madness

Back in the spring, I visited London’s Resonance FM headquarters in Southwark, where I was interviewed by Vincent Luttman for the art station’s Clear Spot show. I’d met Luttman the previous week when he came to the launch event for All Hopped Up and Ready To Go at the British Music Experience. The host of the station’s Saturday lunchtime show, “Nostalgie Ya Mboka” (dedicated to older musics of the two Congos), he has a love for and knowledge of Afro-Cuban music, not as prevalent a hobby in London as it tends to be in New York City, and as I expected, we talked in some detail about Afro-Cuban jazz and the mambo during our interview. But we talked about many other areas of the New York City music scene as well during our hour-long conversation, one of the more relaxed and yet detailed of the many radio interviews I conducted for the book. The interview was finally broadcast in August and I just got permission to upload it to iJamming! Thanks to Martin Williams for the editing and mixing. You can listen to and download it directly here. It’s not just the sound of me talking – there’s lots of great music included, including a rousing version of Machito’s “Tanga.”

By perfectly pleasant coincidence, right as I was preparing this post, I came across an incredible hour-long online mix entitled Voodoo Fever: Mambo and Afro-Cuban Hard-Core, featuring not just the usual suspects such as Tito Puente, Nora Morales and Machito’s Afro-Cubans, but the likes of El Caballo, Frederico Ramirez and Jack Costanzo, none of whom I wrote about in the book – which makes it all the more flattering that the mix was inspired, in large part, by the “Mambo Madness” chapter of All Hopped Up and Ready To Go. I have already created my own mix to accompany this chapter, but mine focuses very much on the tracks that I wrote about – and the beauty of the Voodoo Fever mix is that you can download it and take it with you. My thanks to Dr. Auratheft for raving about the book and compiling the mix; you can access it from here.

By a final coincidence, I’m writing this post after reading well-written and very worrisome articles concerning the inefficacies and privacy issues of our all-encompassing web both in the New Yorker and the Boston Phoenix, and with the suicide of a Rutgers student (after his sexual encounter was streamed online) very much ringing in my ears. And so, as I sign off, it occurs to me that here, this post, is the web as I always hoped it would be, a place not just to promote and share one’s radio interviews (that stuff might be irrelevant in the scheme of things), but to collect, archive, and redistribute old music that would otherwise be lost to the sands of time. Enjoy.

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October 2021