Manny Corchado: Aprovecha El Tiempo
Manny Corchado is probably now best known for his brash boogaloo tracks “Pow Wow” and “Chicken and Booze,” which go for good money in OG, 7-inch format. Burned out on boogaloo, though, I bought this album hoping to hear some of the more interesting Latin sounds that timbales player Manny Corchado and his orchestra cooked up for this late 60’s Decca release.
The gyrating bomba song “Farfallota” is one of the most rhythmically-interesting tracks on the album. Bomba is a Puerto Rican musical style with African origins in which drummer and dancer engage in a “rhythmic dialogue” with the drummer attempting to mimic, musically, the movements of the dancer. The album closes with “Manny’s Guaguanco”—a short and torrid little song that expertly condenses what feels like ten minutes of musical information into a two-and-a-half-minute sprint to the end of the record.
One of the things I love about this album—and Latin music in general—is that, rhythmically, it is never boring. The interplay of instruments seems to always yield some new and unexpected combination of sounds, allowing the music to not just evade the predictability that plagues less rhythmically-enlightened music (e.g., tacky funk), but also inspire new ways of thinking about rhythm, movement, space, and time.