Rock del Sur is a series of posts featuring bands from south of the border from the 60’s and 70’s that will be coming up in the following weeks. First up from Mexico (maybe we can head south on the map the following post) is La Banda Macho de Mexico with a little batch of rock, funk n’ soul from two of their Lps on Sultana. The name might ring a bell for anyone growing up in a Mexican household as the band had a real commercial re-birth in 90’s when they did a lil 360 and took on a more regional mexican “grupero”/romantico sound, but luckily for us they flexed some reasonable rock and funk muscle in the 1970’s.
Hailing from the Monterrey, Nuevo Leon the band produced a trio of Ep’s as Macho, before producing 5 Lps as La Super Banda Macho under which they produced primarily covers of songs which for the most part aren’t the most “original” or inspired covers, though their brass section does shine on a number of covers. Take for instance their reading of Paper Lace’s “Night Chicago Died” which is given injection of energy through some nice brass stabs in the song’s rhythm changes.
Following this release in 1974 the band produced a pair of Lp’s in 1975 the second one being this one which continued the band covering Anglo tunes though I’ve tried to select those versions which I feel have some unique qualities. “Cada quien por igual” is a sweet Spanish version of Little Beaver’s “Party Down” together with some nice searing soul from Lalo Duarte, the band’s vocalist which really took me by surprise when I first heard it. Lastly, not wanting to disappoint the funk lovers out there, a pair of funky numbers which really showcases the band’s brass section with two more covers, the first “Funky Bump” which is their version KC and the Sunshine Band’s “Sound your Funky Horn” and second Average White Band’s global hit “Pick up the Pieces” which funnily becomes “Ya no me pises”
So enjoy this first entry into Rock del Sur, we’ll see what other goodies the following weeks will bring and as always enjoy the tunes. Arrre Macho!!! EB