Mambo for Cats


Damiron, Don Elliott, Tony Martinez, Noro Morales, Perez Prado, Al Romero, and their orchestras

Man, it's time to bolt down the furniture and kick back the rugs. This is no time to be a drag -- let down your hair, roll up those trousers and start swingin'! This is the righteous stuff for all you jazzbos -- mambo for cats --and, man, if you're not a jumpin', rockin', screamin' cat by the time this record ends, there's just no hope-- you're dead.

We've assembled just about every fast-movin' mambo outfit in the game, lighted a fire under their respective music stands and, brother, the results are absolutely the livin' end. They just have to be, for this is music that moves and moves and never gives up -- it's the greatest, man; it's the most frantic, it's the hippest! And any of you deluded hipsters who thought the Latins could play nothing but guitars are sure livin' somewhere in the middle ages.

Every tune we're pushin' at you here is a real jazz standard, most of them the kind that the boys have been blowin' around in circles since 'ole Satchmo was in knee pants. But it's a sure, safe bet that you've never heard the mad flurry of notes assembled here -- the tunes are there all right, but with that mambo beat they kick and rock, they roll and riot like nothin' you cats have ever been sent to before. Man, you're gonna be gone, and you're goin' far.

There's that crazy Prado makin' like mad with Jazz Me Blues and Ballin' the Jack. He's a wild man, he's really gone, knockin' out those cool, screechin' notes. Here he is again with Jersey Bounce and the St. Louis Blues Mambo, diggin' like mad, throwing himself all over the stand. His hysteria is catchin'; man, even on the phonograph this stuff'll murder you -- that is, if your speaker holds out and the walls don't crumble around your jumpin' feet. And here's Al Romero latchin' on to Muskrat Ramble Mambo --he's wingin' low with only vibes and rhythm, but, man, when he hits you've had it-- watch out for flyin' glass.

Now you can dig Noro Morales, that real gone Latin cat who lowers his sights on The Sheik of Araby and Sweet Sue - Just You -- what he does to them is probably illegal, but while he's windin' up he turns out some of the most finger-poppin' music you've ever glommed an ear to. And here's Lullaby of Birdland, too -- man, that's practically the hipster's theme song, nice and cool and crazy, served up here by that jumpin' eighty-eighter, Damiron. And now, cats, you can flip your lids to Tony Martinez' real mad renditions of Fascinating Rhythm and Mambo Jumps, and then go completely off your rocker while Don Elliott, one of the absolute terrors of modern jazz, sticks pins in Love for Sale and Makin' Whoopee. And, man, if you're still conscious after all this, you've got it made.

Jumpin' with these sides is the only known requirement for life membership in the Benevolent and Protective Order of Lid Flippers and Happy Hipsters. That's all you gotta do, man -- move with the music, throw away those inhibitions, and if you've got some rafters handy, start swingin' from 'em. But look, cats -- don't get your feet wet unless your ticker's tickin', unless you've been takin' your vitamin pills and really want to get your kicks. For, man, we've finally discovered what really happens when that irresistible force meets the immovable object. When the mambo meets jazz, man, don't run for cover --just stand your ground and swing with the rest-- but above all else, friends, STAY LOOSE! -- BILL ZEITUNG

Various Artists: Mambo for Cats, RCA LPM 1063 © 1955 Radio Corporation of America
Home Jukebox

© 1996 Hip Wax