🎵 AOTW AOTW: Gato Barbieri - TROPICO (SP-4710)

Captain Bacardi

Well-Known Member
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Thread Starter
Gato Barbieri
TROPICO

A&M SP-4710

sp4710.jpg

Released 1978
Peaked at #6 on the Jazz Album chart and #96 on the Pop Album chart (1978)

Format: Vinyl/8-Track/Cassette/CD

Produced by David Rubinson & Friends, Inc.
Associate Producer: Michelle Barbieri

Songs:
  • 1. Poinciana (Song Of The Tree) (Nat Simon/Buddy Bernier) - 7:48
    2. Latin Lady (Gato Barbieri) - 8:25
    3. Odara (Caetano Veloso) - 7:30
    4. She Is Michelle (Gato Barbieri) - 6:13
    5. Where Is The Love (Ralph MacDonald/William Salter) - 4:53
    6. Evil Eyes (Gato Barbieri) - 4:15
    7. Bolero (Ravel) - 7:26

    Arranged by Gato Barbieri except (1, 7) arranged by David Rubinson and (5) arranged by Gato Barbieri and David Rubinson.
    English Translation of "Odara": Michelle Barbieri

Musicians:
Gato Barbieri - Tenor Sax
Eddie Watkins - Bass
Leon "Ndugu" Chancler - Drums
Eddie Martinez - Keyboards
John Barnes - Keyboards
Greg Porée - Guitar
Melvin "Wah Wah" Watson - Guitar
Bill Summers - Percussion & Congas
Armando Peraza - Bongos
José "Chepito" Areas - Timbales
Carlos Santana - Guitar (2)
Lani Hall - Vocals (3)
"The Waters" (Oren Waters, Luther Waters, Julia Tillman and Maxine Willard) - Background Vocals

Recorded and Mastered at The Automatt, San Francisco, May, 1978
Engineered by Fred Catero and David Rubinson
Assistant Engineers: Chris Minto and Cheryl Ward
Mastering Engineer: Phil Brown

Orchestra Arranged and Conducted by Dale O. Warren, PhD.
Brass Arranged and Conducted by Eddie Martinez
Copyist - Tony Kaye: Vicki Gray, KVG Enterprises

Cover Design conceived by Michelle Barbieri
Photography - Bill King
Art Direction - Roland Young
Album Design - Chuck Beeson

Special Thanks to Carlos Santana for playing such magic on "Latin Lady".
Thank You Lani Hall for singing on "Odara".

"Tropico" is where dreams live. It is the light that explodes within me, fills me with tenderness, warmth and sensuality. It is the sweet rhythm of the imagination, where I turn my fantasies into poetry and poetry into music. Thanks to all our friends, the true ones, the forever ones.
Gato




Capt. Bacardi
 

Harry

Charter A&M Corner Member
Staff member
Site Admin
BarbieriTropicoCD.jpg


That's the picture of the cover of the old A&M CD 3323, differing from the old LP cover by adding a big, bold "TROPICO" at the top. It was somewhat common in the early CD era for cover art to be slightly modified to better show titles and stuff that were more suited to the 12x12 format.

This CD also has what appears to be an extra track, but it's not. The long LP track of "Odara" is split into two pieces, making "Odara" shorter at 6:07. The intro to the piece is given the title of "Adoro" (1:24) and credited as being composed by Gato Barbieri.

Played straight through, it sounds just like the LP, but this one track is divided up, perhaps to give Gato extra income from the little piece he composed as the intro.

The CD must have been re-released at a later date too. When I ripped it into Windows Media, it came up with a picture that had "A&M Original" up the left hand side. I also see pictures on the web that have the title & artist on the cover in a plain white font.

I bought the album initially to hear Lani Hall's contribution - and it's a pretty good one. I'm not typically a fan of saxophone jazz, but this one's OK.

Harry
 

Mr Bill

Gentlemanly Curmudgeon
Staff member
Moderator
That's not surprising isnce the original LP release diod notn hyave the title on the front... It was a clear sticker outside the shrink wrap with "TROPICO" in yellow. Once you removed the wrap there was no title except on the spine...

--Mr Bill
who will add this to the AOTW image file as 3323...
 

Rudy

¡Que siga la fiesta!
Staff member
Site Admin
I picked this up used several years ago. I played side one two days ago, put the LP back in the sleeve, and it's going back down to storage.

At the risk of hurting the feelings of anyone associated with this album, I will say no more...other than that I will never listen to it again.
 

Mr Bill

Gentlemanly Curmudgeon
Staff member
Moderator
No need to fear lashback at a good critique. Of his four A&M albums the first two are superior (Ruby, Ruby being my favorite) while the latter two are rather lacklustre. The difference? Herb produced the first two. I honestly think that was the difference.

--Mr Bill
 

Captain Bacardi

Well-Known Member
Moderator
Thread Starter
Yeah, this album was a disappointment, as was the next album Euphoria. The tracks that Rubinson arranged were just so over-the-top commercial that it was just disgusting, especially the opener "Poinciana". I did like the tracks with Santana and Lani, but the rest seemed to try to repeat what was already done on his first two LPs. "She Is Michelle" was a clear attempt to capture another "Europa" and it didn't work.



Capt. Bacardi
 

jazzdre

Well-Known Member
I believe that this album/cd was reviewed before, and I believe that I added a comment. Well, I'm going to comment again! This album is horrible! It was made in 1978, and if you all remember, Disco was the rage back then, and this album was a clear attempt to capitalize on that. Even though Lani and Carlos Santana made guest appearances on the record, that still couldn't save the album!

I really didn't like Gato's version of "Where Is The Love", didn't like the song that Lani sang on,even though Carlos played with "magic" on "Latin Lady", "magical" the tune wasn't. This album was obviously made to get people moving on the disco floor, but I doubt that it accomplished that! If I remember well, jazz artists such as Maynard Ferguson, Deodado, and George Duke were doing the same type of music back then, to get them the sales that the record labels wanted of them.

I remember reading an encyclopedia of jazz that was written in the mid 70s, and there was an entry on Gato. It said that at the beginning of his career, he played more creative jazz; he played "free" jazz, and more experimental, extrapolated latin jazz. However, after he gained fame with "Last Tango In Paris",the entry said that he seemed to becoming more of an aspiring pop star, than a serious jazz musician. And this was written before he joined A&M! This album seems to be proof of that.And believe it or not, I am a big Gato fan.It's just that this one did not click with me.

It didn't have the (no pun intended) passion and fire of "Caliente","Ruby,Ruby", but he did come back with it again with "Euphoria";which I really dug. Sorry, just could not get into this particular album like the others. One and a half stars from me , and that's a LOT to say about one of my favorite musicians.
Til next time, take care,all
jazzdre
 

Dave

Well-Known Member
An era where anything that was jazz became bland, aural, wallpapered, preachy pop, or else a disco apocalypse of dance floor pyrotechnics, & a producer's "assignment" over-riding a serious jazzman's demure character...

That era could have used something more truer and derivative of its roots, or at the very least, the experimental fusion sounds of more Mahishnu Orchestra or Miles Davis' Bitches Brew sort of stuff...

Given the exercise of placid, plastered, plasticky, platitudes of pablum pop, coasting the promising paths, (owed to at least the all-star appearances of "Wah Wah" Watson, Carlos Santana & Lani Hall) of Trópico into the pathos of mega-tedium, so could Gato Barbieri...


Dave
 

Mr Bill

Gentlemanly Curmudgeon
Staff member
Moderator
:o Uh oh... Looks like someone got a thesaurus for their birthday! :laugh: In all seriousness, though, Dave makes a pretty cogent post here.

-Mr Bill
 
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