MSR041 Phirpo y sus Caribes Y Esa Pava Que? | Pa‘ Los Rumberos

Label: Matasuna Records – MSR041
Title: Y Esa Pava Que? | Pa‘ Los
Artists: Phirpo y sus Caribes
Format: Vinyl, 7“, 45rpm
Genre: Latinfunk, Salsa
Releasedate: June 7th 2024
Reviews: tba
A Phirpo y sus Caribes – Y Esa Pava Que?
03:39B Phirpo y sus Caribes – Pa‘ Los
Rumberos 02:29

Exactly three years ago, Matasuna Records released a hot Latin 45 feat. two songs by the Venezuelan band Phirpo y sus Caribes, led by musician, arranger and conductor Porfi Jiménez. Now, fortunately, two more tracks from the band’s only album, Parrilla Caliente, are being reissued on vinyl by Matasuna – and for the first time, on a 7-inch! The original pressing of the 1972 album on Philips is a rare and valuable collector’s item. Officially licensed by the family of the late musician. Don’t miss this gem!

Y Esa Pava Que? on the A-side of the single is an explosive Latin funk joint written by Porfi Jiménez. An irresistible groover, opulently and densely orchestrated with virtuoso musicians showing off their musicality. Heavy drums, powerful horns, funky & slightly psychedelic keys & guitars are the basic ingredients, enriched with solo parts and vocal interludes. A real treat!

The B-side features Pa‘ Los Rumbero, a cover version of the song by New York Latin maestro Tito Puente. In 1972, Puente recorded a great new version of his original 1955 composition. Phirpo y sus Caribes used this new version as the basis for their cover, compressing the Puente song to about two and a half minutes. The result is an energetic and upbeat song that proves that Porfi Jiménez and his bandmates were among the continent’s finest musicians. Vamos que la rumba ya va empezar!

Artist info

Porfi Jiménez, whose real name was Porfirio Jiménez Núñez, was born in 1928 in Hato Mayor del Rey in the Dominican Republic. He began his musical training at the early age of 9. After studying at the Municipal Academy of Music he became a member of an orchestra at the radio station Voz Dominicana. Its director Enrico Cabiatti introduced him to the art of arranging.

Due to the Trujillo dictatorship, he left the country in 1954 and went to Venezuela, where the young musician became famous as a trumpeter and played in the most important groups of the time. The quality of his original arrangements opened the doors of the most famous record companies of the time in Venezuela. Porfi also became one of the most outstanding composers and arrangers of those years, rebuilding Cuban José Pagé’s Cuban label Velvet in Venezuela and working for all the label’s national and international singers.

At the end of the 50’s until the beginning of the 60’s, he worked in orchestras of various TV stations in the Venezuelan capital Caracas. In 1963, Jiménez founded his own orchestra, which became known as one of the most important musical groups in Venezuela throughout Latin America.

In the 70’s, musical transformations resulted from the emergence of new musical styles & rhythms. Porfi Jimenez, as a contemporary artist and passionate jazzman, began to incorporate new musical elements into his songs that distanced him from the prevailing commercial style. This resulted in the album Parrilla Caliente, which was released as the band Phirpo y sus Caribes and remained the band’s only album. The production, practically unknown, allowed him to experiment and express his artistic creativity, distancing himself from the traditional style of his dance orchestra.

Salsa music and its orchestras lost importance in the 80s and were displaced by new music. However, another Caribbean rhythm filled the gap: the Merengue, which triggered an international boom. Porfi also embarked on this path, releasing an album that immediately catapulted him back to fame. It was a period in which he received numerous awards, such as two gold and one platinum disc.

Shortly before his death, on June 9th 2010, Porfi Jiménez managed to realize his lifelong dream: the formation of his jazz big band, with which he performed at numerous festivals in Caracas. With it, he left an important musical legacy, with several original compositions and arrangements of the most prominent names in jazz history. In 2007, Porfi Jiménez was honored by the United Nations as one of the most outstanding musicians of the continent.