EDDIE’S EXCURSIONS

Eddie Palmieri: Condiciones Que Existen & Chocolate Ice Cream

From Salsa-Jazz-Descarga: Exploration (Coco, 1978)

Eddie (along with brother Charlie) Palmieri’s career spans several key transformations in the history of Latin music – soul, jazz, salsa, etc. In the late ’70s, producer Harvey Averne (yeah, that dude gets around) helped compile some of Palmieri’s more intriguing excursions into this album.

“Condiciones Que Existen” (Existing Conditions) comes off of Palmier’s 19T3 album Sentido and it’s one of the funkiest numbers he ever put together. It’s got this wicked squeegee sound to thanks to Harry Viggiano’s chicken scratch guitars. Slick as baby oil wrestling.

“Chocolate Ice Cream” (Helado De Chocolate) is one of Palmimri’s many jazz compositions, appearing (I think) on either his Superimposition album from ’71, or maybe from At the University of Puerto Rico (it’s a little unclear since this version is 4 minutes longer than the versions on those two albums). If “Condiciones Que Existen,” was brisk, “Chocolate,” takes its time to unwind, spiralling through a 10.5 minute blend of Charlie’s organ noodlings, Eddie’s electronic piano, plus some soulful sax wails by Ronnie Cuber. The rhythm section is top-notch on this, holding down a smooth groove the whole way through (big up Chuckie Lopez Jr. on bongos and Nicky Marrero on the timbales). I don’t smoke out but damn, this sounds like the perfect kind of tune to just light up a fatty too and chill out with.

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