Shocks of Mighty: Mighty Sparrow “The Slave” + New Strut Retrospective

November 3, 2011

Words by Eddie STATS Houghton

We did not make The Mighty Sparrow our Throwback Thursday king for a day just because we love Trinidad. We do. We really, really do. But all emotional considerations aside, he HAD to be the Throwback artist today, objectively speaking, because we just got word that the rare groove specialists at Strut records will be releasing an exhaustive retrospective on the giant-among-Calypsonians very soon (drops January 24th, 2012), covering his essential tunes from a period covering 1962-1974. Knowing what Strut has previously done with Afro-funk (not to mention Antillean disco) we could speculate confidently that Sparrowmania!ย Wit, Wisdom and Soul from the King of Calypso will be a concentrated dose of impossible-to-find tropical goodness. But we don’t have to speculate cause we heard the whole damn thing. To give you a taste, we also got permission to stream this track “The Slave,” which is a pretty good sneak preview of what makes the tunes collected here so essential: driven by Afro-syncopation, Sparrow’s velvety voice and a serious brass section that alternates between spooky minor-keyed jazz conceits and prehistoric soca vibes without missing a hot-step. People, get ready.

[audio:http://largeup.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/Mighty_Sparrow-The_Slave.mp3|titles= Mighty Sparrow-“The Slave”]