Latin music great Eddie Palmieri, whose Jan. 16 concert at Orchestra Hall was a highlight of last season’s SCP Jazz Series, returns this week with two new singles: big-band versions of his salsa standards “Vámonos Pa’l Monte” and “Pa’ la Ocha Tambó.” The digital singles, available beginning Sept. 25, represent the pianist-composer-bandleader’s first releases since his Grammy-winning albums “Listen Here” (2005) and “Simpático” (2006).
Introduced in 1971 with the Fania All-Stars on the album “Live at the University of Puerto Rico,” “Vámonos Pa’l Monte” is one of Palmieri’s signature hits (co-written with salsero Ismael Quintana, lead singer for Palmieri’s seminal band La Perfecta from 1961 to 1971). For the 1971 album, Palmieri recorded it with his older brother, fellow Latin jazz icon Charlie, on organ. “Pa’ la Ocha Tambó,” a staple of Palmieri’s concert performances, was first recorded live in 1971 at the Sing Sing Correctional Facility in upstate New York. This marks its first-ever studio recording.
The singles will be available at all digital stores, including iTunes and Amazon. A limited-edition CD version will go on sale later this fall.
With his typical zest, Palmieri predicts: “These two singles are going to be killer.” His son, Eddie Palmieri II, who’s also his manager, persuaded his father to revisit the songs. He observes that his father’s trademark percussive piano style as well as his relentless and complex piano solos “shine in these two new renderings. We recorded them with the best musicians you can find in the genre today in New York, the mecca of Latin [jazz] in the world.”
TOP: Eddie Palmieri, a 10-time Grammy Award winner, is releasing his first two recordings in a decade. | Photo: Eric Valind