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Dance Mania Vol. 1 by Tito Puente
Released: Jan 1958
Label: U.S. Latin
There's simply never been any bigger personality in Latin jazz than "El Rey," the timbale player and vibraphonist Tito Puente. It's hard to overstate the importance of this 1958 record: Dance Mania was the first major label record to feature Cuban rhythms without a schmaltzy commercial package, the first major mambo LP to feature Spanish vocals, and a heavy influence on the players who would shape the next decade of Latin jazz. Most of all, the record is a deeply representative document of its era. It'll transport you straight to 1950s New York and the brassy, wild, iconic Palladium Ballroom.
Nate Cavalieri

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