This Sunday at The Jazz Meet we welcome Latin Jazz specialist Mr Boogie AKA The Vinyl Junkie to the Floripa DJ booth. With a focus on all things Cal Tjader set to go down, it seemed only right to get the man involved and with him comes not only a stack of hot Tjader wax from his own collection but also the extensive knowledge of how to rock a dancefloor, which might prove a little useful late on into the dance. Born in Paris but of Ugandan heritage, Mr Boogie spent his formative years in France and West Africa before moving to the UK as a teenager. During his travels, he also managed to make a few stopovers in New York as well as Cuba, where ultimately he caught the Latin music bug. Back on home turf and now armed with a few Ticos, Fanias and Vayas, he picked up his first gigs in London around eight years ago where he secured a spot as a Latin DJ at the celebrated salsa sessions at the once fabled Bar Rumba in Shaftesbury Avenue. Since then his journey has seen him feature on the DJ bills of many high-profile venues in the capital as well as a number of larger events such as The London Jazz Festival, London Latin American Film Festival and even BBC Radio 1’s Hackney Weekend! Having now established his own Soulsa® Productions music event, promotion and management company, Mr Boogie can still be found holding down a couple of monthly DJ residencies, as well as hosting a twice-monthly music show on Shoreditch Radio called ‘Melting Pot’, where he indeed spins the classic sounds of Black & Latin New York (Latin, Salsa, Soul, Jazz, Funk, Rare Groove, Boogie & Disco).
As a little taster of what to expect from him in the booth this Sunday, we took a cursory look inside the man’s DJ box to see what’s up. Here we present his 5 Cal Tjader picks that you have just got to check out:
Cal Tjader – Shoshana (from the album ‘Gozame! Pero Ya’)
I ab-so-lu-te-ly adore this track. As was probably the case for a few of my peers, I was introduced to ‘Shoshana’ via Kenny Dope and Louie Vega’s Nuyorican Soul album project from 1996. At the time, I was completely oblivious to the fact that it was a cover. It was while I was in New York during the summer of 2001 that I stumbled across the ‘Gozame! Pero Ya’ LP in a market stall near Union Square. The weather in New York was gorgeous throughout and every time I hear ‘Shoshana’, memories of that summer come flooding back.
Cal Tjader – Mood For Milt (from the album ‘Cal Tjader’s Latin Concert’)
Growing up as a die-hard Hip-Hop fan, I always had an insatiable desire to unearth the samples behind some of my favourite records. I got myself a copy of the ‘Cal Tjader’s Latin Concert’ CD mainly for two tracks: ‘Cubano Chant’ (I wanted to hear Cal’s interpretation of this Latin Jazz standard originally performed by Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers) and ‘Mood For Milt’ which had been beautifully sampled by De La Soul on ‘Watch Out’ (taken from the ‘AOI: Bionix’ album).
Cal Tjader – Morning (from the album ‘Agua Dulce’)
Most of my Cal Tjader-mad friends prefer the version that appeared on the ‘Agua Dulce’ LP. I am however much more partial to the one lifted from ‘Soul Burst’. Written by the late Clare Fischer who passed away last year, this is another classic Cal Tjader tune that I never tire of listening to.
Cal Tjader – Cuban Fantasy (from the album ‘Cuban Fantasy’)
This is pure and unadulterated Afro-Latin Jazz and the arrangement on this track is dynamite. Cal not only wows the crowd on the vibes (the instrument he is most closely associated with) but also on the timbales. With Poncho Sanchez and Clare Fischer also on top form on the congas and the electric piano respectively, this monster tune slowly builds up to an exhilarating climax.
Cal Tjader & Eddie Palmieri – Ritmo Uni (from the album ‘El Sonido Nuevo’)
I was in my third year at uni and was beginning to swim towards the wonderful world of Jazz and Salsa. As you do, I dipped my toe in the water by initially buying compilations. This track featured on a CD I picked up from Tower Records in High Street Kensington entitled ‘Carnival Rhythms’. Two giants of Latin Jazz coming together on a monumental composition!
To catch a few more choice Latin tunes from Mr Boogie, make sure to check out this fiery Latin jazz mix he dropped off to us earlier in the year…
… and then come and join us at The Jazz Meet this Sunday to see what the man havs up his sleeve on the Tjader front as he lines up alongside resident Rob Coley in the Floripa DJ booth. They’ll both be kicking things off from 5pm sharp before Jessica Lauren, Orphy Robinson and band take the stage from around 8pm to play two live sets of exclusively Cal Tjader compositions, done in their own imitable style.