Salsa con Reggaetón

by: Andy Montañez

This longtime salsa favorite -- with the help of a little reinvention -- tops the charts once again with his 2006 record, Salsa con Reggaetón. In an effort to synthesize the old and the new, the classic and the fresh, the Univision label employed the talents of top Latin music producers Ramon B. Sanchez and Sergio George, both of whom need only touch a project for it to turn to gold. Montañez, a veteran of the world famous El Gran Combo, a crown in the Puerto Rican salsa crown, collaborated with some of the island's new breed of recording stars. Reggaeton artists like Daddy Yankee, Cheka, and Voltio are just a few who lend their flow to Montañez's new sound, which he calls "salsatón." The tunes are fun and danceable, a great mixture of thick, live sounds and the block-rockin' sound of the drum machines that give reggaeton its steely spine. Though bringing together a well-seasoned, gray-haired salsa vocalist with raw, contemporary talent may seem like a gamble, it seems to have paid off. Salsa con Reggaetón rose to the Top Five of more than one of Billboard's Latin Music charts. Andy Montañez sounds as strong and artful as he ever did. This is one for the books. ~ Evan C. Gutierrez

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