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The Inside of How: I Got Started as a Kid - New to the Bronx

I got started as a kid new to the Bronx at the age of 12...


When I started with Afro Cuban/Caribbean Jazz music it quickly became an obsession. I was at a new friend’s house; James Taylor and his oldest brother was practicing his dance moves for that weekends outing at The Palladium. I think the music was the Alegre Allstars, the sound was infectious. In refection I realize it drove me to the brink of madness. As I moved thru the music performance stages I didn’t fit in, well, because I frankly pushed everyone to swing - Sometime to good effect most time not. This drove me to begin my research to where the music came from and how I fit in….


I’m not the only one this happened to. The names that share a similar experience read like a “who’s who list” of the Afro Americans who were also infected with the rhythm of our ancestors… After all we didn’t speak Spanish, so we were on the so called “outside looking in” of the prevailing music scene in the Bronx. Some of the names I remember: Chollo, La Flamboyant, Latin Jazz Sextet and Pucho and the Latin Soul Brothers and some of the names of the members are:

James Taylor

Andrew Langston

Dwight Gassaway

Peter LaBarbera

Marvin Branch

Louis Smalls

Marvin Neil

Lew Mathews

Curtiss Fowlkes

Kenny Hamilton

Alex Blake

Irving Wynn

Joe Daily

Sam Turner

Billy King

Greg Calhoun

Pat Patrick

Jimmy Flehmen

Lenny Rodgers

Kenny Rodgers

Bobby Brown

Anthony Palmer

Bill Jacobs

And many others...

That is quite an eclectic group who understood where the rhythm’s originated and were captivated by them. With many from this distinguished group now a part of our ancestral history we carry their spirit to Cuba with us.


Dr Mambo an Experience…..




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