An event took place 50 years ago that marked the before and after of tropical music. Many people wonder how the popular movement was orchestrated by merely adopting a marketing and business name for different rhythms that had already existed for years, such as cuaracha, magan, guacuango, mambo, brass band, etc. , boogaloo and other Afro-Caribbean sounds would eventually adopt the name “salsa”.
In 1964, Johnny Pacheco founded a record label called Fania with Jerry Masucci, a North American Jew-Italian.
Both Pacheco and Masucci contributed money, and the Dominican musician combined his talents to bring together the best musicians and singers in the New York milieu in a short time.
Since then, an elite group of musicians and singers began signing for performances and recordings by bands such as Ray Barreto, Larry Harlow, Joe Button, Bobby Valentine, and Willie Callan.
In 1968 and 1969 the albums (LP) of Fania All Stars were released, recorded live in a barn called the Red Garter, which was the setting for meeting Fania for the first time.
In the music crowd, the stars of the moment in Fania were reinforced with musicians from the Tico Alegre All Stars, such as Tito Puente, Eddie Palmieri, Ricardo Rey and Jimmy Sabater.
Two albums entitled “Live at the Red Garter”, Vol. 1 and Vol. 2, had jazzy-downloads with some Clint sass.
Three years later, on Thursday, August 26, 1971, their stars reunited, now for a concert-dance at the Cheetah Club Room to be filmed as part of the documentary “Our Latin Thing” with a neighborhood perspective. Latina), directed by Leon Cast, will launch the musical movement “El Sonido de Nueva York” at the meeting of Hispanic musicians and singers.
Since the music worked on two albums and the film’s “soundtrack” that resulted from that meeting was so important to this historical document, there is now a considerable difference from the previous encounter of a jazzy nature.
On that occasion, Fania did not seek reinforcements from other record companies for its project, as it had artists under its tutelage with sufficient musical ability, appreciation from the New York public, and respectable record sales.
Fania’s primary objective in making the film titled “Our Latin Thing” (Our Latin Thing) was to reinforce the so-called New York sound and take its production to theaters in the North American city. and promoting the Latino population of the Caribbean and America and their artists and company’s music catalog.
On August 24, 1973, exactly 50 years ago, the Fania All Stars met for the third time at Yankee Stadium in an epic concert attended by more than 40,000 spectators.
This 1973 concert featured Mongo Santamaria and Ray Barretto on congas; Larry Harlow on piano, Dominican Johnny Pacheco on flute, Luis Kahn on trombone, Nicky Marrero on timbalero, Ray Maldonado and Victor Bass on trumpet, Yomo Toro on quattro, Roberto Rona on bongo player, and Bobby Justin Bassi on bass. Betancourt and Ismael Quintana. Celia Cruz was the guest of honor.
Taking advantage of the meeting, the intention was to film a second film titled “Salsa”, where the name would be adopted as a marketing and commercial concept, and the rhythms described above would certainly be called “Salsa”.
We don’t want to change the history of the use of the word salsa, which dates back to 1925 when Ignacio Piñero with his Septeto Nacional in the song “Echele Salcita” and Ray Barreto used it on his album. Salsa y Tulsura”, LeBron Brothers’ “Salsa y Control” and Federico Betancourt was one of the first in Venezuela to release an LP with his Combo Latino titled “Lego La Salsa”. .
However, the word gained momentum when announcer Phidias Danilo Escalona incorporated it into his radio show entitled “The Hour of Salsa, Flavor and Bempe”. It was not a marketing and business idea, but rather it was based on the tomato sauce condiment he promoted on his program.
Undoubtedly, the common marketing and trade name “Salsa” comes from Fania All Star.