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8 Aug 2017

Changó "Changó" 1975 US Latin Funk Rock


Changó  "Changó"  1975 US Latin  Funk Rock

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x11rduc

full

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-5VtCwz9Akg


Of course, Chango's first LP is a rip-off of Santana's 1970s sound, and if you want to dismiss it on the count of lack of originality, go ahead. What should not be overlooked though is the fact that the group played some very hot salsa jazz-rock. They did not do it better, but they sure did it well. Although not Carlos Santana, George Tacktikos studied the guitarist's playing closely and performs a few strong solos, especially on "Caminando" and "Chango." Thomas Alletto plays a mean organ, and singer Pepe Gomez matches any Santana singer. This first LP blends the raw energy of Abraxas and the subtleties of Caravanserail (maybe with something of Chicago's early pop sensibilities too), while delivering a more poppy and energy-driven charge than what Santana used to do. Side one contains the fiery "Walk on Hell" and "Caminando," truly the group's finest moment. The five songs on side two segue, alternating fast-paced numbers and slow instrumentals in true Santana fashion. "Solid Karma" stands out. This album was clearly well-produced and thought over, the song order being just right. One could do without the love-making sighs at the end of the last track. The god Chango, explain the liner notes, is "the representative of unbridled sexuality" -- the relentless rhythms of the previous 40 minutes were proof enough. Recommended to fans of early Santana who don't mind plagiarism...... by François Couture ..


Jamming. This is Santana IV, the culmination of heavy Latin groove rock.

This album has it all, the screaming Carlos guitar licks (and what chops!), the swirling organ (do you like Hammond? Oh boy, get a doctor, you’ll need it), the speed freak machismo lead singer (messed up chicks swoon for this) and of course those danceable and tranced-out rhythms (even this stiff white guy noticed). The lyrics are just what you want from this kind of album: Sex, life-in-the-ghetto, grade-school mysticism and well, sex.

Right off the bat, you’re pulverized with “Fire Over Water” followed by the eight minute “Walk on Hell”. Do I really need to describe these tracks? Put the environment, instrumentation, song titles and influences together and you’ve got an aural vision. Many of the songs are catchy too – you’ll be humming them for days. “Caminando”, “Solid Karma” and especially “Mira Pa ‘Ca” just have KILLER melodies. But where Chango excels is in the instrumentals like the pounding “Bollo” and “Bembe” plus the beautiful “Sacapa.” But the best is saved for last. The nine minute title track combines relentless energy, tuneful melodies and fiery instrumental playing. It’s awe-inspiring. Careful though, as you may find yourself in a big heap afterwards. Of course the closing moments have a 15 year old’s imagination-girl-moaning-in-ecstasy bit. It’s stupid but somehow fits.

How this album missed the big time is a mystery to me. Being 1975 perhaps it was too late for the early Santana sound, but not too many groups went down this road. I’m guessing that ABC records, not known for their marketing muscle, had no idea how to promote it. There are few albums ever that contains this kind of energy and instrumental virtuosity and combines that with a strong melodic sense. A true masterpiece and a really undiscovered gem. George Jacobs Lead guitarists has re released the Chango Album on CD and every digital download site. You can buy it here direct. Its also on i-Tunes, Cd Baby.The Album sold Gold in 1975 selling over 300 albums in three months.

On their self-titled LP originally released by ABC in 1975, Chango played enthused Latin-Rock-Funk. They were a group very similar in sound and style to Santana. Santana happens to be one of my favourite artists so it was easy to get into this album. I found this to be first-rate music with searing guitar leads by George Tacktikos and some heavy organ parts weaved in and out of the prevailing guitar courtesy of Thomas Alletto. Pepe Gomez handled the lead vocals, and he sounded very much like a combination of David Clayton Thomas of Blood Sweat & Tears and Gregg Rolie from the early Santana group. I must say that his voice was very sturdy and well suited for the music. Those attributes gave the group the kind of strength and authority that they needed coming from that all-important position in the group. The music is very dominant, so a lead singer with an equally strong vocal presence is essential in getting the music across to the audience. Michael (Blinky) Britton (percussion, congas), Burlin Speakes (bass), and Reinol Andino (timbales, congas, percussion, vocals) are the rest of the lineup that made the bands distinct and cultural sound so imposing.

This group could honestly stand on its own as a relevant musical force regardless of the obvious similarities to the Santana sound. There were distinct differences in the sound on many occasions during the course of this recording; you just need to listen carefully. The artwork on the LP cover is thought provoking and bold so the message is delivered strongly as to what exactly the word ‘Chango’ means. It is described inside of the gatefold sleeves as the God of virility and strength. Upon inspection of the images on the cover of the LP I found several indications of this meaning. Every aspect of the music, art, and messages are cleverly put in place on this album. Viva! Chango! You came and went but you all left an unforgettable impression behind.( Cometrecords ).

*** Imagine yourself walking the barrios in Queens, New York circa 1975. Bums, pushers, hookers, street musicians and the smell of tortas vendors. You see a small club, it has a name like “Enrique’s Hell Hole,” you venture in. Torches are a-flaming, you tiptoe over the junkies and needles scattered about the floor. There are hundreds of sweaty men and women grooving to the most energetic music the American Latino community ever produced. On stage are six fried dudes, cranking out some intense music. I do mean intense. Two percussionists and a drummer drive the speedy pulse, while organ, bass and guitar roar, slash and sing. This is all Chango’s first album and for anyone who likes the early Santana vibe, then you are in for a treat, cause Chango goes where Santana let up. That’s right – forget “Soul Sacrifice” and get ready for some serious jamming. This is Santana IV, the culmination of heavy Latin groove rock. This album has it all, the screaming Carlos guitar licks (and what chops!), the swirling organ (do you like Hammond? Oh boy, get a doctor, you’ll need it), the speed freak machismo lead singer (messed up chicks swoon for this) and of course those danceable and tranced-out rhythms (even this stiff white guy noticed). The lyrics are just what you want from this kind of album: Sex, life-in-the-ghetto, grade-school mysticism and well, sex.

Right off the bat, you’re pulverized with “Fire Over Water” followed by the eight minute “Walk on Hell”. Do I really need to describe these tracks? Put the environment, instrumentation, song titles and influences together and you’ve got an aural vision. Many of the songs are catchy too – you’ll be humming them for days. “Caminando”, “Solid Karma” and especially “Mira Pa ‘Ca” just have KILLER melodies. But where Chango excels is in the instrumentals like the pounding “Bollo” and “Bembe” plus the beautiful “Sacapa.” But the best is saved for last. The nine minute title track combines relentless energy, tuneful melodies and fiery instrumental playing. It’s awe-inspiring. Careful though, as you may find yourself in a big heap afterwards.

How this album missed the big time is a mystery to me. Being 1975 perhaps it was too late for the early Santana sound, but not too many groups went down this road. I’m guessing that ABC records, not known for their marketing muscle, had no idea how to promote it. There are few albums ever that contains this kind of energy and instrumental virtuosity and combines that with a strong melodic sense. A true masterpiece and a really undiscovered gem. Fortunately the Akarma record company has done us all a favor by releasing this on CD and an exact gatefold LP.

For Chango’s second album, Honey is Sweeter Than Blood apparently lead singer Pepe Gomez got too big for his britches and tossed all the members except one, changed labels to Mercury and went soul-pop. The music isn’t even recognizable for those who love the first album and is a huge disappointment. For Latin Soul music, it’s not bad but not exactly what I’d hoped for. I seriously doubt anyone will reissue this and it doesn’t need to be. Just go straight for the first album and never look back. ( Gnosis2000-Thomas Hayes ).


Gatefold. Originally released in 1975 on ABC. A sound inspired by (and very close to) the great Santana (circa Abraxas-era). Chango, God of virility & strength, also of thunder & lightning. Above all is representative of unbridled sexuality. There is no deity more vehement, nor energetic. Could be described as the "God of All"..


If you like (early)Santana you'll like this, an excellent album. Highly recommended for lovers of (jazzy)latin rock of the 70's. 


Changó was formed in New York in 1967, and was only to release that first album in 75, without even a single before. You can not compare your sound to that of Santana on her first three albums, before she increased the doses of jazz. Maybe the guys have suffered from the comparisons, maybe not. It is also probable that 1975 was already a bit late for this kind of rock, because Changó released only one more album the year after the one of the one and it disappeared. But what matters is that this album is good for damn.


A CD copy of this album came into the store last month, and I took to it immediately due to the fact that the band and album share a name with everyone’s favorite hipster coffeeshop in Echo Park. The music contained on the gramophone record sounds nothing like the mind-numbingly bland “indie-rock” one would normally hear while drinking Chamomile or Yerba Mate tea at Chango. For the most part, it sounds like the first Santana records. That is to say, the style is something like salsa-infused jazz-rock. Chango was a six-member band that featured three percussionists, a bassist, a keyboardist and a guitarist. AllMusic writes that “side one contains the fiery ‘Walk on Hell’ and ‘Caminando,’ truly the group’s finest moment. The five songs on side two segue, alternating fast-paced numbers and slow instrumentals in true Santana fashion. ‘Solid Karma’ stands out…The god Chango, explain the liner notes, is ‘the representative of unbridled sexuality’ — the relentless rhythms of the previous 40 minutes were proof enough.” I know for a fact that Chango were based in Los Angeles, but I have no way of knowing if they were somehow involved with the creation of the coffeeshop.....by....Collector Scum 


Credits 
Bass – Burlin Speakes 
Congas, Percussion – Michael Britton 
Drums – Ken Weissman 
Drums, Lead Vocals, Percussion, Piano – Pepe Gomez 
Guitar – Charles Rook 
Guitar, Vocals – George Tacktikos 
Organ, Vocals, Piano – Thomas Alletto 
Timbales, Congas, Percussion, Vocals – Reinol Andino 
Timbales, Percussion, Vocals – Mike Cruz 


Tracklist 
A1 Fire Over Water 5:34 
A2 Walk On Hell 7:58 
A3 Bollo 3:24 
A4 Caminando 6:57 
B1 Mira Pa 'Ca 3:00 
B2 Bombe 0:50 
B3 Solid Karma 4:50 
B4 Sacpa 1:14 
B5 Chango 8:21 


johnkatsmc5, welcome music..