Friday, August 27, 2010


When I read the liner notes to this 1963 Capital release - " 'Marimbas Mexicanas' will appeal to those who seek the unorthodox, the rare" - I thought: "Hey, that's me!"

I don't usually think of Mexican music as danceable as, say, Cuban mambo or Columbian cumbia, but there's some seriously jammin' stuff here, e.g. "Ven Carinito Ven." And hearing "Quien Sera"
was a bit of a shock - the melody is one you Dean Martin fans will recognize. Had no idea that it was originally a Mexican tune.

Marimba Chiapas - "Marimbas Mexicanas"

Oh, how I love the thunkety-thunk sound of marimbas. I also love how, in the '60s, the idea of an all-marimbas instrumental tribute to Glen Campbell wasn't looked at as some weird experiment, or conceptual joke. It was, as alien as it may seem to our modern sensibilities, a perfectly mainstream release. After all, The Baja Marimba Band were cranking out hits for A&M Records at the time.

Living Marimbas Play Galveston and Others

This is not as raw as "Marimbas Mexicanas." It's generally nice summer chillin'-in-the-backyard kinda tuneage, sometimes approaching funk ('approaching' being the operative word here). But "Gentle on My Mind' is anything but gentle - it's so frantic you could pogo to it.

1. Galveston
2. Gentle On My Mind
3. Honey
4. Wichita Lineman
5. Dreams of the Everyday Housewife
6. That's Not Home
7. Little Green Apples
8. By The Time I Get To Phoenix
9. Let It Be Me
10. Hey Little One


DJ Useo said...

yah yah! I sure like that instrument.Thankee.

Anonymous said...

I'm guessing you're a xylophone/ marimba/ glockenspiel/ vibraphone fan - correct?

Mr Fab said...

Yeah, I suppose I am, percussion music in general, tho I prefer the more raw sounds of marimbas and African balafones to the more clean sounding glockenspiel-type instruments. But, really, I try to spotlight any unusual instruments that are overlooked in today's pop music.