American Chris Nettuno is not only a serial entrepreneur and music patron, but as a congas player he is also part of the band Canelita Sabrosa.

When the Covid pandemic threatened the survival of his band, he set up weekly porch concerts on Friday nights. And that immediately became the lifeblood of the debut album of this multicultural band from Atlanta.

Five-time Grammy Award winner Dru Castro (India.Aire, Usher, Childish Gambino), along with two-time Grammy-winning guitarist Julio Miranda and drummer Chunky Sounds produced the disc. Canelita Sabrosa means tasty cinnamon, a name that refers to the multi- and ethnic diversity within the band.

Colorful Puerto Rican, Afro-Cuban, Brazilian and Caribbean nuances mix with improvised jazz explorations and rock god guitar pyrotechnics. Add percussion to rhythms of salsa, samba and boss nova to rhythms and melodies by Kenny Nettuno. Most are instrumental tracks, although some have been given a sung version.

A groovy cover of Camila Cabello's 'Seņorita' opens, immediately reminding me of Carlos Santana's music. 'Te Espere' is an original track with R&B influences, followed by the very danceable Latin 'Si Se Puede'. Guitarist Julio Miranda opens 'Morning', after which we head towards Brazil with 'Breath of Rio', and again there is some Santana influence.

Then we hop over to Havana, where I was a guest in February. This is also a cover by Camila Cabello, after which 'Vamos' takes us to a festive fiesta. Bill Withers' 'Use Me' is the next cover, after which 'Love Song' by The cure gets the same treatment.

And then expect a surprising new rock version of 'Come Together' by The Beatles. 'Clouded Vision' propels on in a rousing way, followed by the sung 'Late Winter'. This is followed by 4 su
ng versions of instrumental tracks and they are: 'Use Me', 'Love Song', 'Come Together' and 'Clouded Vision'.

The band proves on this debut that they can handle anything from Latin over salsa to pop, rock and R&B. And that with a touch of influences from Puerto Rican, Afro Cuban, Brazilian and Caribbean music! Colorful and beautiful!



1) Seņorita (4:39)
2) Te Espere (3:46)
3) Si Se Puede (3:23)
4) Morning (5:51)
5) Breath Of Rio (4:09)
6) Havana (4:46)
7) Vamos  (3:43)
8) Use Me (4:20)
9) Love Song (6:13)
10) Come Together (3:43)
11) Clouded Vision (3:37)
12) Late Winter (3:05)
13) Use Me (4:20)
14) Love Song (6:13)
15) Come Together (3:43)
16) Clouded Vision (3:37)

Copied from Cultuurmania with permission of the author.