Mongo's Way/Up from the Roots

Mongo's Way/Up from the Roots

by Mongo Santamaría


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Mongo's Way/Up from the Roots

With the exception of a soulful reading of the Box Tops' "The Letter," Mongo's Way abandons the pop covers that dominated Mongo Santamaria's late-'60s dates for Columbia in favor of a more far-reaching Latin jazz sensibility shaped by elements of soul, funk and rock. Working with producer Neal Creque, as well as a superior supporting cast featuring guitarist Eric Gale, tenor saxophonist Stanley Turrentine, and drummer Bernard "Pretty" Purdie, Santamaria creates some of his most atmospheric and eclectic music, similar in spirit and scope to the myriad blaxploitation soundtracks jamming retail bins but executed with uncommon artistry. This two-fer reissue also features Up from the Roots, an exploration of the African origins of Caribbean music that prompts Santamaria to set aside his trademark conga drums in favor of traditional African percussion instruments. The LP features some of his most potent and artful playing, capturing the rhythms and textures of traditional African chants with masterful precision. As a primer in African musical history, Up from the Roots at times errs too much on the side of education over entertainment, but by the record's second-half, Santamaria returns to the funky Latin soul of his most popular efforts, unleashing the righteous "Jose Outside" and "Forked Tongue."

Product Details

Release Date: 06/08/1999
Label: Collectables
UPC: 0090431625927
catalogNumber: 6259

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Mongo Santamaría   Primary Artist,Conga
Cachao   Bass
Lew Soloff   Trumpet
Stanley Turrentine   Tenor Saxophone
Armando Peraza   Bongos,Conga
Chuck Rainey   Bass
Roger Glenn   Flute,Background Vocals
Carter Jefferson   Soprano Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Don Alias   Drums
Marty Sheller   Percussion
Angel Allende   Percussion
Cissy Houston   Vocals
Judy Clay   Vocals
Julio Collazo   Conga,Tambourine,Vocals,Chekere,Bata Drums,Chequere
Neal Creque   Piano,Electric Piano
Eric Gale   Guitar
Marcelino Guerra   Choir, Chorus
Raymond Maldonado   Percussion,Trumpet
Bernard "Pretty" Purdie   Drums
Grant Reed   Tenor Saxophone
Pablo Rosario   Bongos,Bells
Sylvia Shemwell   Vocals
Myrna Smith   Vocals
Bill Saxon   Alto Saxophone,Baritone Saxophone
Papaito Muñoz   Conga
Eddie "Gua Gua" Rivera   Electric Bass

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