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Joe Bataan

No recording artist has more impeccable street credentials than Joe Bataan, the originator of the New York Latin soul style that paralleled Latin boogaloo and anticipated disco. His musical experience began with street corner doo wop in the 1950s, and came to include one of the first rap records to hit the charts, 1979's "Rap-O, Clap-O." In between these milestones, he recorded classic albums like Saint Latin's Day Massacre, a perennial favorite in the salsa market, Salsoul, which gave the record label its name and helped spark the national explosion of urban dance music, and Afrofilipino, which included one of the very earliest New York disco hits, an instrumental version of Gil Scott-Heron's "The Bottle."

Born Peter Nitollano, of African-American/Filipino parents, Joe Bataan grew up in Spanish Harlem, where he ran with Puerto Rican gangs and absorbed R&B, Afro-Cuban, and Afro-Rican musical influences. His music career followed a pair of stints in Coxsackie State Prison. Self-taught on the piano, he organized his first band in 1965 and scored his first recording success in 1967 with "Gypsy Woman" on Fania Records. The tune was a hit with the New York Latin market despite its English lyrics sung by Bataan, and exemplified the nascent Latin soul sound. In early anticipation of the disco formula, "Gypsy Woman" created dance energy by alternating what was fundamentally a pop-soul tune with a break featuring double-timed handclaps. Bataan would take this tendency even further on his influential Salsoul, which fused funk and Latin influences in slick yet soulful orchestrations. Salsoul remains influential as a rare groove cult item, and pointed to the future at the time of its release. The LP embodied the artist's highly deliberate and culturally aware musical concept. Bataan theorized the '70s next big thing as a hybrid: an Afro Cuban rhythm section playing Brazilian influenced patterns over orchestral funk. In many ways, his vision was on the money, though most of the money would go to others and mainstream stardom would elude him. He did, however, get in on the ground floor of the new trend as an early hitmaker. His biggest commercial move was a Salsoul production released under the Epic umbrella, and promoted to the new disco market as Afrofilipino, which included 1975's "The Bottle," a much-anthologized classic that drives an R&B horn arrangement with a relentless piano montuno.

Always in touch with the street, Joe Bataan picked up on rap very early in the game. His minor rap hit, "Rap-O, Clap-O" was a bit more successful in Europe than in the States, and is remembered as rap's debut in the European market. Nevertheless, his legacy remains his gritty and realistic Latin soul lyrics, his self-identification as an "Ordinary Guy", and his highly personal and prophetic merger of Latin and soul influences. ~ Richard Pierson
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Call My Name

1. Call My Name

2. Chick-A-Boom

3. I'm The Foll (Parts 1 And 2)

4. Cycles Of You

5. Secret Girl, My Superfraud

6. Ernestine

7. Chevere Que Chevere

8. Keep The Change

x

Track List: Joe Bataan Anthology

1. The Bottle (La Botella)

2. Latin Strut

3. When Sunny Gets Blue

5. Sadie (She Smokes)

6. Fin

7. Ordinary Guy

8. Women Don't Want To Love Me

9. Aftershower Funk

10. Johnny

11. When You're Down (Funky Mambo)

12. Latin Lover

13. When We Get Married

15. Ling Ching Tong (12" Mix)

x

Track List: Joe Bataan II

1. Forever

2. Mestizo II

3. He Don't Really Love You

4. Super Girl

5. Ling Ching Tong

7. When We Get Married

8. You, My Love

x

Track List: Joe Bataan And His Mestizo Band

2. Latin Lover

4. Always And Forever

x

Track List: Salsoul

1. Mi Nube

2. Muchacho Ordinario

3. When Sunny Gets Blue

4. Mujer Mia

5. Fin

6. Latin Strut

7. Johnny

8. Peace, Friendship, Solidarity

9. Aftershower Funk

10. Continental Square Dance

x

Track List: Saint Latin's Day Massacre

1. Coco-E

2. I Wish You Love (Part 1)

3. I Wish You Love (Part 2)

4. Para Puerto Rico Voy

5. If I Were A King

6. Charangaringa

7. Ramona

8. El Regreso

9. Mujer

10. Shaft

x

Track List: Riot

1. It's A Good Feeling (Riot)

2. For Your Love

3. Muneca

4. Pa Monte

5. What Good Is A Castle

6. Daddy's Coming Home

7. Mambo De Bataan

8. My Cloud

9. Ordinary Guy

x

Track List: Gypsy Woman

1. Gypsy Woman

2. So Fine

3. Fuego

4. Campesino

5. Chickie's Trombone

6. Too Much Lovin

7. Sugar Guaguanco

8. Figaro

9. Ordinary Guy

x

Track List: Mr. New York & The East Side Kids

1. My Opera

2. Aguanta La Lengua

3. Chili Beans

4. When We Get Married

5. Prayer

6. Puerto Rico Me Llama

7. Es Tu Cosa

8. Make Me Smile

9. More Today That Yesterday

10. Juan Juan Lechero

x

Track List: Ordinary Guy (Jazzanova Rework)

1. Ordinary Guy (Jazzanova Rework Extended Version)

2. Ordinary Guy (Jazzanova Rework Extended Instrumental Version)

x

Track List: Poor Boy

1. Poor Boy

2. Freedom

3. Pepe El Toro

4. Obatala

5. Uptown

6. Sad Girl

7. Bravo

8. Pajarito

9. So Young

x

Track List: Singin' Some Soul

2. I'm No Stranger

3. Under The Street Lamp

5. More Love

6. Unwed Mother

9. Cowboys To Girls

x

Track List: Subway Joe

1. Subway Joe

2. Juanito

3. Mujer Mia

4. Nuevo Jala Jala

5. Special Girl

6. Ponte En Algo

7. Triste

8. Magic Rose

x

Track List: Young, Gifted And Brown

1. Ordinary Guy

2. What Good Is A Castle

4. Poor Boy

5. Uptown

6. My Cloud

7. I'm No Stranger

8. Under The Street Lamp

10. More Love

11. Unwed Mother

12. Young, Gifted, And Brown

13. Cowboys To Girls

14. Crystal Blue Persuasion

16. Coco-E

18. I Wish You Love, Pt. 2

Comments

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nancyweissbe i n
A PRAYER to all❤️
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nancyweissbe i n
Hey! All Pandora listeners have a bless day❤️
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nancyweissbe i n
Thanks again mperez0111, for confirming JB is doing well⭐️
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mperez0111
Joe is very much alive and well, just saw him perform in New York at SOB's in August. He is still jamming! The best!
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jblakers213
Arriva mi RAZA From East LOS.
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nancyweissbe i n
All just for your info JB is alive and well today!
He is still with us he is 73 years old:))
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(Always Like To Be On My PQ) (I'm Going Be Sweeter To You Tomorrow) JOE BATAAN R.I.P
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nancyweissbe i n
Para Puerto Rico voy! I love this song!❤️
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I love all his music it seems like he's telling his life story RIP
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nancyweissbe i n
Always and Forever, I love the remake of this song by the man JB❤️
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JoHnnY BoY
VeNicE `13 ��LuNaLoVe ��
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SING IT JOE!
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LOVE HIS MUSIC, ONE OF THE BEST TO COME OUT OF SPANISH HARLEM.
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What a romantic singer. Sing to me anyday.
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My JoHnnY ♡
mY CloUd ,The pRaYeR -|-`
VeNicE ~13
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Joe Bataan is the best.
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for me the year was 1970 and Joe Bataan and RALFI were jamming at parties all through So Cal. The English and Spanish that they sang coupled with the topics of the day showed us that we must stand tall and enjoy the mix to come for everyone...b l a c k brown, white, yellow and red. Like Ralfi sang don't stop now
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nancyweissbe i n
The PRAYER song is a powerful one!
Report as inappropriate
What a great singer...... l o v e the Cloud song.....and all his music it reminds us ( me n my husband of our homeboy mando RIP ) he would play joe Bataan so loud cruising in the neighborhood ( miss him )
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A very sexy voice. Joe Bataan the man! :-) :-) :-)
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nancyweissbe i n
Going to work but have to listen to Joe, so much LOVE GIRL❤️
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nancyweissbe i n
Happy St Patty's day! Listening to I wish you love❤️
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nancyweissbe i n
Listening to My Cloud, but I'm in my own world:)
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almishu
Joe Bataan was the S**t love his lyrics and soulful voice.
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Joe Bataan and Ralphy pagan are 2 of the best singers that don't get enough credit! Great musicians
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margo2014.mf
Love his voice and this song!
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nancyweissbe i n
Relaxing at home listening to Joe Bataan,
to Muchacho ordinario❤️
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That's Right??? Bumping Them Killer Oldies De Mr. Joe Battan#1...
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margo2014.mf
I need shelter.
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margo2014.mf
This is the song forever! Thank you Joe Bataan!
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Love all my oldies��
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IT'S FRIDAY HERE IN THE OFFICE WORKING BY MYSELF LISTING JOE BATAAN WHAT ELSE DO I NEED MAKES IT A NICE WAY TO START MY WEEKEND :)
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I Wish you blue birds iiiiin thhhhhe spriiiiiinng ! ! ! ! Damn I love this jam :)
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one of the finest voices to grace us.
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Mosko63
Listening to Joe Bataan and Ralfi Pagan in The Hub City, surviving the rough times and tuff times of the seventies.
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First saw joe Battan in Los Angeles in 1989 at la super show
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Mosko63 back in the days under the street lamp
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Love me some latin soul....
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Learned this prayer in St. ANTHONYS CHURCH WHEN I WAS 9 IN MY MOM GRACIE RIP HOMETOWN GARDENA, CA!! ♥ MISS U DEARLY MOM.
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I wish you nothing but love in your future but its not with me. I
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When will I get married?
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Compton cut downs jams
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Southern California 1970s and 80s good times jammin to Joe Bataan
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But most of all I wish you love girl..... Beautiful words, the tongue is so powerful!
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You will b kissed on the nearest Friday by the love of ur life tomorrow will be the best day of ur life however if u don't post this u will be injured (but u will not die) in two days now that u have started this so don't stop post this on five different songs in 143 minutes and ur lovers name will appear on the screen in big letters so scary it actually works
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Great music time awesome am in the sauna grooving
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Such soul, such feeling! I fall into a hypnotic groove.
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BUT MORE THAN THIS I WISH U LOVE...FIRME ROLA LOVE IT ❤
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I drift into a place of happiness and cruise down memory lane..
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How come joe Bataan greatest hits album is not listed my favorite song my opera
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