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The Ray Mantilla Interview….

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Ray Mantilla was born in the South Bronx in 1934. He was going to the Palladium and catching Machito and Tito Puente blister the crowds with dizzying arrays of Salsa. Ray eventually got his chance at the Congo and was a vital part of the Herbie Mann quintet along with Chief Bey, Ray Barretto where they sought to annihilate drums on a nightly basis. Ray was lucky enough to be at the epicenter of the fusion of Latin rhythms and jazz in the late fifties and sixties. This urban strut played out with Joe Farrell, Art Blakey, Jeremy Steig and Max Roach.

The Nuyorican Conguero,

JF