Today's exclusive is the first of two songs I'm posting this week taken from "Si, Para Usted," a new compilation of Cuban music from the '70s and early '80s. Led by pianist Chucho Valdes, Irakere has long been one of Cuba's top jazz bands, with stars like trumpeter Arturo Sandoval and saxophonist Paquito D'Rivera passing through its ranks. But jazz takes a back seat to funk on "Bacalao Con Pan": A churning wah-wah guitar and some furious conga work are at the center of this sweaty, hip-shaking track. If you needed proof that there's more to Cuban music than Xavier Cugat and the Buena Vista Social Club, here it is.
-- David Marchese
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