Bobby Montez : African Fantasy and Kon-Tiki
taken from the album “Jungle Fantastique” on Jay-Gee/Jubilee (1958)
Two nights in a row with not much sleep, but I still decided I’d wake up early. Partly it was so that I could be a courteous boyfriend and give my girl a ride to work while the L train was down, but really it was so that I could get fresh picks at some of my favorite Brooklyn junk stores. Due to my current state of disability and brokeness, I hadn’t been record digging for what seemed like ages. I’m a full blown junkie, no secret there. Even a week without thumbing through a crate is difficult. So after almost a full month of deprivation, you’d better believe I was cringing for my fix.
The wait paid off for sure. From the depths of a dusty dollar bin comes this highly sought after latin-jazz gem. Despite the poor quality of this 1958 pressing, collectors fork over loot for this piece of wax whenever it pops up. 99 cents? Had to leave that little orange sticker on the corner to prove it. The MP3s I recorded here come from my Cubop remastered re-issue. I’m debating trying to sell this OG copy (which is in excellent shape!), but I honestly don’t know if I could part with it just yet. Kinda ridiculous given the stack of unpaid bills that are sitting in my desk drawer right now, given that I own a vinyl re-issue, and given that there’s a constant hiss throughout the whole thing. But finds like this are a rare and treasured thing for us junkies – commodity fetishism just a bit. At this point, advice would be appreciated. Any recovered addicts out there know of a 12 step program?
From the liner notes:
“A huge, handsome man strolls accross the open space. A pace behind him is a dark, hairy animal. Our hero stops in front of the tent at the edge of the clearing. He clears his throat… and says: ‘Me Tarzan, you Jane. You Mambo?’ Perhaps, if you haven’t visited the jungles, you believe it sounds fantastic. But you will believe the sounds of ‘JUNGLE FANTASTIQUE’ can make it possible.”
From the perspective of the wildman who lives in the perpetual jungle of my mind, I can vouch for Bobby’s ability to bring this mambo insanity to life. It’s all too real. I’ve been there. I’ve felt it. I can’t come back to civilization now.