War was never hurting for Latino fans, and in some cities, Latinos were actually in the majority at War concerts. Coleccion Latina, released in 1997, focuses on the War classics that have been especially popular among its Latin fans. The liner notes are entirely in Spanish, and the CD was aimed primarily at Latin buyers. Coleccion boasts major hits like "All Day Music," "Me and Baby Brother" and "The Cisco Kid," as well as gems that didn't reach the top of the charts but were heard at many a Hispanic gathering, including "Cinco de Mayo" (War's ode to the Mexican holiday), the playful "Hey Senorita" and the mostly instrumental "Ballero" (a cha cha along the lines of Tito Puente's "Oye Como Va" and Ray Barretto's "Cocinando"). Also quite enjoyable is a remake of "East L.A." (originally released on Peace Sign) featuring José Feliciano. Coleccion isn't without its flaws -- amazingly, the very salsa-influenced "Spill the Wine" is missing (a glaring omission indeed!), and the original version of "Low Rider" would have been a much better choice than the techno remix offered here. But despite those shortcomings, Coleccion is well worth obtaining. Latinos had been putting together cassettes of these songs for years, but with Coleccion's release, they were finally united on a single CD.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson