Nuyorican Soul
Kozmigroov Albums
Nuyorican Soul [Giant Step, 1997]
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All-star albums are usually dodgy affairs, but the over-arching talents and, more importantly, production experience of Masters at Work's Kenny Dope and Little Louie Vega keep Nuyorican Soul from being overburdened with cooks. Roy Ayers, George Benson, and Jazzy Jeff contribute prominently to four tracks, and vocalists Jocelyn Brown and India (Vega's wife) are heard as well, but over half of the album is comprised of instrumental tracks several which include Tito Puente on vibes and timbales, flutist Dave Valentin, trumpeter Charlie Sepulveda, organist/arranger Hilton Ruiz, and trombonist Steve Turre. In keeping with Masters at Work's heritage, most of the album is Latin in feel and jazzy in composition, but with ever-present synths and piano runs that belie their heavy dance heritage. [John Bush]