Ernesto Antonio "Tito" Puente (April 20, 1923 – May 31, 2000) was an American musician, songwriter and record producer. The son of Ernest and Ercilia Puente, native Puerto Ricans living in New York City's Spanish Harlem, Puente is often credited as "The Musical Pope", "El Rey de los Timbales" (The King of the Timbales) and "The King of Latin Music". He is best known for dance-oriented mambo and Latin jazz compositions that endured over a 50-year career. He and his music appear in many films such as The Mambo Kings and Fernando Trueba's Calle 54. He guest-starred on several television shows, including Sesame Street and The Simpsons two-part episode "Who Shot Mr. Burns?". His famous song is "Oye Como Va".
Mango Santamaria utilizes a colorful cast of musicians on this CD. Flutists Hubert Laws and Dave Valentin are featured on two songs apiece (although unfortunately not together) and the nonet has trumpeter Eddie Allen, altoist Jimmy Cozier, and Craig Rivers on tenor and soprano, along with three percussionists. There are a lot of percussion features including the closing nine-and-a-half minute "La Mogolla," making this an excellent if not quite essential recording.
Chanteuse Patricia Kaas was born in France's Lorraine region, where she began performing as a youth; by age 11, she even held a residency at the Rumpelkammer Club in Sarrebrucken, Germany, over time honing a distinct style updating the French chanson tradition with elements of pop, blues and jazz. Scoring her first national hit in 1987 with "Mademoiselle Chante le Blues," Kaas was named Female Newcomer of the Year at the Victoires de la Musique, and her debut album Mademoiselle Chante earned platinum status in France, Belgium and Switzerland; the follow-up, Scene de Vie, topped the French charts for three months…
Mambo Sinuendo is a collaboration between Ry Cooder and Buena Vista alum (and formerly of many other groups as well) Manuel Galban. The album attempts to catch an old style popularized in Cuba by Galban, and was, surprisingly, never followed up on by anybody after Galban. It's a guitar-based romp closely based in the pop/jazz crossovers of the 1950s-1960s (Henry Mancini, Nelson Riddle, etc). There's a touch of exoticism here and there, and a larger touch of a relatively Hawaiian feel throughout the whole via the guitar techniques employed by the pair. It's all somewhere in a form between lounge, mambo, and Esquivel's old space-age-bachelor-pad music. In rare instances, there's even a little bit of a house drum loop added in by the percussionists.