f you think that Latin music isn’t somehow relative to the Rock World, then perhaps you need to purchase Santana’s Abraxas album in the thirty dollar format Mobile Fidelity puts out.
Latin music is part of the base root of music integral to what comes out of New Orleans. I once sat under the tutelage of Earl Palmer over lunch 3 years ago at this joint next to Paramount studios that has recently closed. There at that lunch, Earl explained to me how New Orleans music was shaped by everything that came in to that harbor.
Caribbean flavors and South American salsa, samba, tango stewed in the rich gumbo of rhythms from the African Continent, not to mention the Creole inflection lifting from the fog banks of the swamp.
There congealed in the Mississippi Delta some of the very essence of what Rock and Roll is now came to the fore in the 50’s from that fertile, musical epicenter.
Dig. Fats Domino & Little Richard powerhouse hits were all manufactured in Nawlins.
My dear friend and Mentor, James Gadson, always loves to spring little surprises on me.
We’re behind Harvelle’s talking after B.J. Sharp’s blistering gig, and James mentions to me that Tris Imboden is playing at China Club with Cecilia Noel and The Wild Clams. The last time I heard Tris was at The Baked Potatoe 1 year ago: The Great drummers always smile when they play.
Oh my God, I tell James I’ve got to be there ’cause I love the way Tris rides his Gibralter racked tubs… And I was planning on getting some sleep, since I’d been healed the week before by the REAL monsters of Rock. ‘Course James knew that Tris was on The Road with Chicago.
But my friend loves to surprise me.
There is a Rose in Spanish Harlem: Her name is Cecilia Noel.
“I’m just a sub”, Dave Weckl says to me in a Tri-State-Philly accent. Tris Imboden is one of the Great drummers out there in a Monstrous band called Chicago. I guess being a charter member of the Drum Corps Cadre enables you to get the hammer of the gods to be your substitute.
Dave Weckl cruised in stage right with his beautiful wife and it took some nerve on my part to introduce myself to Thor. Getting up the gumption with Dave helped when it came time to exchange greetings with Sugarfoot Moffat who was there for the second set.
You don’t understand the Respect I’ve got for the working musician, let alone these stone cats.
There is a Rose in Spanish Harlem: Her name is CECILIA NOEL.
This charismatic, incendiary Artist fronts a large, large band complete with trigger happy horns that shoot straight and some of the Finest dancing singers I’ve ever seen backing vocals.
This is a show folks: LIVE entertainment. I felt compelled toward the equator by the way the band took charge of the China Club and turned it into a swirling dervish of dancing models, celebrities, and musicians that actually forced CC’s staff to break down tables facing the stage to make room for the crowd-swell that spilled in from the dance hall next door.
THAT I’ve Never seen happen at China Club… until Cecilia turned up.
Quentin Davis down in Nawlins ought to book Cecilia Noel And The Wild Clams for Latin Night at Veterans Auditorium during The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival in April/May of 1996.
This band will be THE Hurricane Happening down by the Quarter. All those cogniscent music lovers flying up from Brasil, Argentina, Venezuela, and Nicaragua will kiss their plane tickets once they’ve experienced this Formidable band in live performance.
God Forbid Howard Stern ever got a load of Cecilia and Her dancing, Babe singers… his tune would change…he’d feel more inadequate than he acknowledges he already is.
Howard needs to get hip to THIS woman. It’s Much Deeper than what you’re aware of, my fellow Long Islander.
I was born in Brooklyn, so I ain’t selling you no bridge. Trust Me.
This article was originally featured on Rock Around the World.