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Little Bit of Mambo

Little Bit of Mambo

3.8 11
by Lou Bega

In the wake of Ricky Martin's cross-cultural block party, "Livin' La Vida Loca," comes "Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit Of…)" by crooner-rapper-lothario Lou Bega. Rooted in a sample of backside-bustlin' beats and fanfare horn hits (courtesy of Cuban mambo ambassador Perez Prado), "No. 5" throws…  See more details below


In the wake of Ricky Martin's cross-cultural block party, "Livin' La Vida Loca," comes "Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit Of…)" by crooner-rapper-lothario Lou Bega. Rooted in a sample of backside-bustlin' beats and fanfare horn hits (courtesy of Cuban mambo ambassador Perez Prado), "No. 5" throws electro-funk, pop-hop bounce, and a whole lotta sweet-smellin' cheese into a frothing pot of sassy soul sauce. In that vein, the rest of Bega's full-length debut, A LITTLE BIT OF MAMBO, is a mix of dizzyingly lighthearted, summertime escapism -- from the fluffy doo-wop flavored "Baby Keep Smiling" to the hip-hop-tweaked Caribbean getaway "Icecream" to "Beauty on the TV-Screen," a lonely guy's lament that brilliantly bites the Tokens' 1961 classic "The Lion Sleeps Tonight." Sure, Bega's blustery singing is pretty ham-fisted and his quasi-raps aren't likely to woo GZA's market share, but the karaoke abandon of his vocals do possess a certain charm, and any Beck or Cornershop fan who can't find the fun in this gloppily poppy, post-modern mix of Afro-Cuban, Latin-American, Afro-American, and Italian-American good vibes is in hipster denial.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Jose F. Promis
Out of left field came German-born, Italian/Ugandan Lou Bega, scoring an international chart-topping single with his infectious "Mambo No. 5" -- the only thing that kept it from reaching the top of the U.S. charts was the fact that no American commercial single was ever issued. The rest of Bega's album, A Little Bit of Mambo, follows pretty much the same recipe as "Mambo No. 5." A couple of songs, including "1+1=2" and "I Got a Girl" are virtual rewrites of the aforementioned hit -- meaning that if one didn't enjoy "Mambo No. 5," then one would have a difficult time enjoying the rest of the album. Nonetheless, this breezy, feel-good disc is entirely intoxicating, incorporating Caribbean rhythms and instrumentals ("The Most Expensive Girl in the World," "Icecream"), mambo-meets-techno influences ("Can I Tico Tico You"), jazz and hip-hop ("The Trumpet Part II"), and old-time nostalgia ("Baby Keep Smiling"), to create one of 1999's most unusual and unique albums. Lou Bega's vocals are limited, to be sure, and the lyrics deal with little more than girls and partying (and are too ridiculous to be taken seriously), yet his charisma and good-natured intentions are undeniable. None of the songs on this disc came close to matching the success of "Mambo No. 5." The second single, the hypnotic, brass-heavy "Tricky Tricky" failed to even ignite the U.S. Top 40, rendering Bega as more a novelty act than anything else. Nonetheless, this album is unique in the pantheon of 1990s pop music, and those who enjoyed his hit will likely enjoy the rest of this feel-good, summery concoction.

Product Details

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Lou Bega   Primary Artist
Hans Bettinger   Brass,Overdubs
Felice Civitareale   Brass,Overdubs
Claus Reichstaller   Brass,Overdubs
Kai Taschner   Speech/Speaker/Speaking Part
Frank Lio   Piano,Keyboards
Wolfgang VonWebenau   Piano,Keyboards
Black II Black   Brass,Overdubs
Goar Blessenkamp   Guitar,Keyboards
Matthias Borst   Guitar
Christofer Kochs   Harmonica,Harp
Axel Kuhn   Brass,Overdubs
Christian Pletschacher   Percussion,Background Vocals,Vibes
Stefan Schrupp   Organ,Hammond Organ
Lisa Cash   Speech/Speaker/Speaking Part
Goar Biesenkamp   Guitar,Keyboards
Wolfgang Webenau   Piano,Keyboards
Mellodations   Choir, Chorus

Technical Credits

Pérez Prado   Composer
Leon Zervos   Mastering
Frank Lio   Composer,Lyricist,Producer
Lou Bega   Composer,Lyricist,Artwork
Goar Blessenkamp   Producer,Executive Producer
Boragno   Cover Design,Cover Art,Cover Photo
D. Fact   Producer
Ronald Reinsberg   Cover Art
Angelika M. Zwerenz   Artwork,Fashion Stylist
Goar B   Executive Producer
Z. Abreu   Composer

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A Little Bit of Mambo 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What kind of narrow mind would consider as womanizing the Mambo 5. The song does not say anything that Julio Iglesias could not say. So what if the guy likes many of his girlfriends. I bet you don't like your own appeareance too much either. Jealeous you're not Rita?
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is one of the worst groups that I have heard in a long time. By this time next year, noone will remember his name.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
Lou Bega, I love to listen to all your songs espeically Mombo #5 and I Got A Girl! You are cool!!! You are DABOMB!!!!!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I got this CD yesterday and I love it so much that I'm playing now on the computer! I think it's worth the moola! M y favorite song is I Gotta Girl. Lou's Cafe is also good.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Lou Bega has good songs. Mambo No. 5, Tricky Tricky and I got a girl, are the best.I love this CD.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This CD has some great songs such as Tricky Tricky and Mambo #5 but really.. All he sings about is all the ladies he likes and how many girls he has... Yadda yadda yadda. It gets pretty annoying after a while.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The entire CD is Awesome. I listen to it when I work out. All the songs are upbeat. The lyrics are entertaining. It is the absolute Best CD for a cardio machine. Makes you want to get up and move.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Jessica is hot and sexy
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
great inthusiasum! wonderful talent. I think if he did more songs like mambo then he'd be on the top three of the chart!