The Twist Goes Latin!




In 1962 the twist went Latin and all but killed off pachanga. Latin-twist records are rare in the U.S., but several of the major-label maestros made them. Perez Prado's Twist Goes Latin is a classic, as is his fantastic Our Man in Latin America, with its bongosons (Cuban twists). Prado also came up with "rockambo" (mambo rock), mod Latin-rock, and Latin funk in the 1970s.

Tito Rodriguez's Latin Twist earns distinction at least because of the vocals in cheesy, Desi Arnaz style. In addition to the "twisted" Latin standards, he covers Henry Mancini's cool "Something for Cat."

Roger King Mozian and his Latin Twisteros' El Twist!!!!!! is the best, most hopped-up album of the breed, including rock, jazz, and even Oriental twist. (His "Asia Minor" was a huge success for Machito.) A followup to his hit with "Changa Rock," El Twist!!!!!! even was reissued in the Columbia Special Archives Series.

We had expected more from Xavier Cugat's Twist with Cugat. Cugat's gorgeous wife Abbe Lane had introduced the Latin-twist dance --or something like it-- long before 1962. (She had to do something between her numbers.) Cugie experiments with Latin rock in "Rock Moruno" and the later Dance Party LP.



Latin-Twist LPs

Rating
8Willie Bobo: Let's Go Bobo!; Roulette SR-25272 (mod Latin twist/Latin rock/Latin soul)
Los Columbus: Variaciones en Ritmo; Musart D-691
4Xavier Cugat: Twist with Cugat; Mercury SR-60705; 1962
7Eduardo Davidson: Le Frisson; United Artists UAS-6581; 1967 (Latin twist/Latin soul)
7Irving Fields Orchestra: Twisting; Everest SDBR-1134/LPBR-5134; 1961
6Los Mosquitas; Mardi Gras International LP-5029
9Roger King Mozian: El Twist!!!!!!; Columbia ES-1776; 1962
Manolo Muñoz: Twist; Musart D-683
8Perez Prado: Twist Goes Latin; RCA Victor LSP-2524; 1962
6Conjunto Primavera: Bailemos Twist con Texaco; Fragoso FLP-530
Los Reyes del Twist; Musart D-690
7Walfredo Reyes & his Band: Try The Latin Twist; Gema LPG-1159 (w/Julio Gutierrez, Rene Hernandez, Willy Torres, Jose Feliciano..)
7Tito Rodriquez: Latin Twist; United Artists UAS-6194; 1962
Pablo Beltran Ruíz: Twist; RCA Victor MKL-1420
6Cuco Valtierra: A Ritmo de Twist; Musart D-699
Alberto Vazquez: Ritmos Juveniles; Musart D-697
Various: Twist-'62; Musart D-698
Various (Arturo, Los Diablos del Rock, Los Juniors..): Twists; Eco-108


Partly Latin-Twist LPs

Rating
8Julio Angel/Tammy: 2 a Go Go; Hit Parade HPLP-004 (Puerto Rico; con los Diamantes)
8Los Calvos: Estos Son; RCA Victor International FSP-197; 1967 (Venezuelan madness)
The Champs -- see Latin Rock
7Comparsa Universitaria de la Laguna: Magic Trumpet; RCA Victor Mexicana MKS-1634/MKL-1634; 1965 (Latin rock/Latin twist/Mexicali/mod/exotic rock; "El Marcianito")
7Johnny Conquet & his Band: Latin Dance Party; Premier/Coronet CXS-194 (for the great "Latin Twist" in stereo)
6Enrique [Guzman, con Los Salvajes] y el Twist; Columbia DCA-224 (Mexico)
4Los Iruna'ko: El Amor es un Festival; Rumba RLP-55573 (partly Latin twist/Latin rock)
7The Living Brass: Mexican Shuffle; RCA Camden CAS-907; 1965 ("La Paloma")
4Joe Loco & his Pachanga Band: Dance! ("Pachanga Tweest 1&2"); Liberty/Sunset SUS-5133
7La Lupe: The Queen Does her Own Thing; Roulette SR-42024 ("Twist & Shout"; prod. Harvey Averne; rock covers)
5Enrique Lynch y su Conjunto: Otro Impacto; Sono Radio SE-9035 (Peru)
7Pepe Moreno y su All-Star Orchestra: El Boogaloo de Cantinflitas; Adria AP-68 (2nd 1/2 of "Boogaloo Bola"; Antilla ANT-68)
6Noro Morales: Coma Esta; Tico SLP-1068; 1961
7Perez Prado: Exotic Suite of the Americas; RCA Victor LSP-2571; 1962
9Perez Prado: Our Man in Latin America; RCA Victor LSP-2610; 1963
7Joe Quijano & his Orchestra: Everything Latin--Yeah, Yeah; Columbia CS-8870/CL-2070; 1963 (last of 3 LPs for CBS; partly proto-Latin soul--"watusi" era; w/arrangers Charles Fox & Marty Manning)
7Manuel Rivera: Dance Tempo Cha Cha Cha; Crown CST-171 (Latin/Latin twist)


[Partly] Latin-Twist 45s

Rating
9Johnny Conquet, his Piano & All Stars: Asia Minor/Latin Twist
8William Gonzalez y sus Torcedores: Ven, Tuerce Bien (Let's Twist Again)/Los Leones Duermen (The Lion Sleeps Tonight); Alegre 3078 (Latin twist/bolero; Spanish vocal; prod. Al Santiago!)
9Los Johnny Jets: Dracula A Go Go/Eternamente; Discos Columbia 9885 (horror Latin mod rock-soul)
8Machito & his Orchestra: Twist Changa Parts 1 & 2; Roulette R-4402 (Latin twist; full-length as opposed to abridged version on LP comps)


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