Veneno Soundsystem (made up of DJs Ronaldo Evangelista, Mauricio Fleury and Peba Tropikal) have been throwing itinerant parties and spreading good music in their native São Paulo for the past five years, exposing forgotten sounds from Brazil and South America. Main man Ronaldo Evanglista recently put together a great mix that shines a light on the Mambo craze that swept Brazil in the ’50s and early ’60s, vying with Samba and Bossa as the nation’s favourite dancing music. Drawn from old LPs, 45s and 78’s, take a trip into the Latin sound of Brazil….
Mambo is not a Brazilian rhythm. Brazilian people don’t speak spanish. Afrocuban percussion is different from the traditional macumba and samba ones in Brazil, but in common they have the same roots. Through these roots, the language comes naturally to the bamba percussionists in Brazil’s hills. If the whole world was going with the mambo craze in the 50s and learning its rhythm lessons for its own lexicons, surely in Brazil it couldn’t be different. Perez Prado was a star, Mongo Santamaria was recording brazilian tunes in New York, every fancy orchestra in Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo had a few cha cha chas in its repertoire, often the dancers’ favorites. Through early ten inches and rare 45s, the occasional vocal star, orchestras and small combo LPs, versions and originals, we get a glimpse of the smoky, velvet-y, red-lighted, mirror-adorned brazilian clubs with hot live music and an elegantly dressed dancing audience. Eighteen unfairly forgotten jewels, tropical Brazil.