Chaino

Africana & Beyond!

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According to the liner notes, Chaino (pronounced "cha-ee-no") was discovered drumming in an L.A. dance studio by Kirby Allan, a former suave crooner turned producer who claims to have "produced, composed and arranged" all of Chaino's music. This 27-track compendium compiles material from the best Allan-produced albums of the so-called "Undisputed King of the Native Skins" -- including Jungle Echoes, Chaino Africana, Jungle Mating Rhythms, and Night of the Spectre -- that were recorded during the late '50s for various jazz labels. The master tapes for these albums were used here, in addition to vinyl copies (reportedly supplied by Allan himself) for extremely rare tracks that Chaino recorded for the Orb label. The collection is divided into three sections: "Chaino Exoticana" (tracks one through 15) mixes sultry jazz with Chaino's percussion, "Chaino Rock 'n Rollana" (tracks 16 through 20) shifts into commercial late-'50s-style pop, highlighted by sultry piano and guitar interplay and Chaino panting away on "Gone Ape," and the last section, "Chaino Africana" (tracks 21 through 27), is solo Chaino. Chaino's teen-oriented cuts, such as "Ubangi Rock" and "Rockin' Bird Bongo," have apparently found a new audience with exotica fans who discovered Chaino in the '90s. According to one source, the theme to The Ren & Stimpy Show, "Dog Pound Hop," was even inspired by Chaino's version of "Bongo Rock."

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