Henry Lee "Pucho" Brown is one of the original practioners of Latin-jazz cross pollination. He has the natural ability to intertwine jazz, Latin, salsa, funk, and R&B into whatever else he may be musically feeling at the time. Pucho also has the ability to surround himself with musicians that can naturally follow his lead yet hold their own once they arrive. On his second release for the Cannonball label How'm I Doin, Pucho is spurred on by a special guest roster that includes Fred Wesley, Eric Alexander, Harvie Swartz, Tony Velez, Dave Valentin, and Lew Soloff. These 11 tracks embrace traditional Latin music on "Son Cubano" (featuring violinist Louis Kahn) and "Esy," a funky version of the O'Jays' "For the Love of Money"; the romantic Bolero "Somewhere in the Night"; and the infectious drive of three featured mambos: "Dolphy Mambo" (dedicated to Alexander), Tito Puente's composition "Willie and Ray Mambo," and "Vietnam Mambo," a reworking of Pucho's tune he first recorded in1966. When these diverse music styles are combined they create a whole that few musicians can successfully sustain as Pucho and his 2000 edition of the Latin Soul Brothers do on How'm I Doin?
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AllMusic Review by Al Campbell