Dizzy Gillespie: Guarachi Guaro


Guarachi Guaro


Dizzy Gillespie (trumpet)


The Complete RCA Victor Recordings (Bluebird 66528)

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Dizzy Gillespie (trumpet), Sabu Martinez (percussion, vocals),

Dave Burns, Elmon Wright, Willie Cook (trumpets), Andy Duryea, Sam Hurt, Jesse Tarrant (trombones), John Brown, Ernie Henry (alto saxes), Joe Gayles, Budd Johnson (tenor saxes), Cecil Payne (baritone sax), James Forman (piano), Al McKibbon (bass), Teddy Stewart (drums), Joe Harris (congas)


Composed by Dizzy Gillespie & Chano Pozo. Arranged by Gerald Wilson


Recorded: New York, December 29, 1948


Rating: 94/100 (learn more)

Out of the studios for over a year due to a recording ban, Gillespie's band came back with a roar, starting with this Machito-like collaboration written by Diz and Chano Pozo. The percussionist was murdered earlier in the month, and it is Sabu Martinez who leads the singing while the band answers him. The montuno that follows is built by orchestral layering, finally exploding in swing. Gillespie used this as a concert opener during 1949, beginning the piece with extended trumpet and percussion solos, and Gerald Wilson later recorded this with a pickup orchestra in California, taking up two sides of a single record. An excellent example of what was called Afro-Cubop, a piece that has equal elements of bop and Latin big band music.

Reviewer: Jeff Sultanof

If you liked this track, also check out

Dizzy Gillespie: Manteca
Dizzy Gillespie: Grovvin’ High
Cal Tjader: Soul Sauce

Related Links

The Dozens: Twelve Classic Dizzy Gillespie Performances by Mark Lomanno
John Birks “Dizzy” Gillespie (encyclopedia article) by Mark Lommano

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