El Barrio

Salsa is fusion music, and here's proof: a four-CD box of 1960s and 1970s jams with Willie Colón, Eddie Palmieri, Ray Barretto, Joe Bataan and other genre giants cross-breeding Latin rhythms with Afro-American grooves. Latin purists once dissed the hybrid boogaloo, but today songs like Joe Cuba's semi-rapped Spanglish "Do You Feel It? (¿Tú Lo Sientes?)" sound both fresh and funky, and Palmieri's "Chocolate Ice Cream (Helado de Chocolate)" is a jazzy cha-cha-cha to charm all palates. The disco mixes are occasionally overripe, but as Bronx block-party flashbacks go, it's vivid – you can almost smell the cuchifritos.

Listen To "Do You Feel It? (¿Tú Lo Sientes?)": 

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Photos: Random Notes