Just like in the movies, you could say : Fred Paul and Mini Records strike again with the release of yet another volume of Haitiando. There are some new faces among the musicians, such as Yvon Mondésir, Pipo Stanisse, two well-known Konpa stars, the team remains practically intact, for our own enjoyment. Singer Boulot Valcourt with his unique voice and phrasing, does not disappoint, giving identity to the music.
If anyone still had any doubt about the connection between Haitian and Latin musicians, they should be erased by now. The title Haitiando, Mas Creolatino is a perfect reflection of that connection. You can feel and hear how the musicians are at ease with each other. Famed violonist Federico Britos is at his best and Leo Quintero on the guitar does a fantastic job. I love the way bass player Ramses Colón follows every twist and turn in the song, af if he was talking to you through his instrument. Listen to the melodious and nostalgic tune No. 2 Dodo Turgeau. The exchange between the pianist Abel Pabon and guitarist Leo Quintero is simply beautiful and trumpet player Julio Diaz intervenes to make excellent harmony. On this new release, Fred Paul has a diversified set of composers whose songs were retained to be included here: Jazz des Jeunes, Rodolphe Legros, Étoile du Soir, Anilus Cadet, Raoul Guillaume, Murat Pierre, Les Charmeurs du Cap. It is always amazing to see how new arrangements can revive some of these songs that we might have forgotten. You will be transported back memory lanes as you listen to tune No. 3, Coquillage; tune No. 5 Respekte; the beautiful tune No. 6, Jérémie. Many will especially enjoy the lyrics of this particular song composed by Raoul Guillaume. As far as I know, not too many composers have written songs about this city know as the City of Poets. Each one of the songs brings back a wave of memories and they are played either on a nice traditional cha cha cha or bolero rhythm, just like Haitians love it. Citizens from Cap-Haitien will particulary enjoy tune No. 8, Pot-Charmeur, a pot-pourri of nice ballads by Les Charmeurs du Cap. Trumpeter Julio Diaz surpasses himself with his muted sound which beautifully enhances the melody. His solo is flawless as he weaves through his lines.
Haitiando, Mas Creolatino, added to the previous 3 volumes, makes a wonderful gift for the lovers of Haitian music and Cuban rythms. It is well-known how the culture of Haiti and Cuba are intimately linked and this initiative of Fred Paul strongly reinforces these ties. He should be highly commanded for that and I for one, am already eagerly awaiting the next volume. There is so much music out there. This CD is highly entertaining; it is an excellent dancing CD and it is greatly pleasing to your ears. You will thoroughly enjoy it.
Help fight Haitian CD piracy. It is bad for everyone.
Serge Bellegarde, for Windows on Haiti, December 2009
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