Salsa’s Mr. Feeling

Cheo Feliciano - El Señor Sentimiento
Cheo Feliciano – El Señor Sentimiento
Cheo Feliciano

El Señor Sentimiento (Fania, 2009)

All right all you Latin fans, have I got the goods for you. Overflowing with 30 tracks of the plumy goodness that is the hallmark of percussionist and vocalist José “Cheo” Feliciano and his more than five decades of incredible music making, the two-disc set, El Señor Sentimiento, marks a career that has put an indelible mark on Latin music.

In addition to reveling in the career of one of [wiki:Salsa]’s premier singers, this set also offers tracks featuring Mr. Feliciano with Latin music’s icons such as Joe Cuba and Eddie Palmieri. Compiling tracks from 1964 to 2002, El Señor Sentimiento provides not only a juicy slice of Mr. Feliciano’s career but also a delicious serving of the Puerto Rican musical tradition.

Opening with the 1964 deliciously slinky version “El Ratón” with Joe Cuba, disc one luxuriates in the lush sounds of the 1960s and ‘70s Salsa recordings. Tracks like the richly percussive “Nina” or the seductive “Juguete,” El Señor Sentimiento thrills with Mr. Feliciano’s rich vocals and brilliantly orchestrated compositions.

The 1971 track “Ay Que Rico,” with Eddie Palmieri from the recording José “Cheo” Feliciano, enfolds the listener in a plushy lounge sound with a sizzling horn section and sassy female backup singing they simply don’t make anymore. This CD also offers other treats like “Nuestras Vidas” from the recording La Voz Sensual de Cheo, “Armonioso Cantar” from the recording With A Little Help From My Friend and “Me La Gozo Entera” from the recording Felicidad.

The second CD only gets better with tracks like “Hasta Mañana” and its flashy ‘70s guitar licks or the jazzy “Brinda Por Mi.” This CD also offers the 1996 track “El Dia Que Me Quieras” with Eddie Palmieri from the recording Salsa Tango and the 2002 track “Busca Lo Tuyo,” also with Eddie Palmieri, from the recording Too Much.

My favorite has to be opening track, “Desconfianza,” from the recording Looking for Love, featuring Mr. Feliciano’s wonderful vocals against a dreamy background of strings. Other delights include “Estampa Marina,” from the recording Estampas, “Imcomparable” from The Singer and “Canta,” also from the recording The Singer.

Mr. Feliciano’s buttery vocals surrounded by lushly worked compositions on all these recordings captured on El Señor Sentimiento are sure to enchant old and new Latin fans.

Buy the 2-CD set or MP3 download:

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