“Calipsos” by Lord Cobra con The Beachers - album review

features in: Album Chart of 1972Album Chart of the Decade: 1970s

TJR says

From the culturally diverse land of Panama comes Lord Cobra and his good-natured, highly danceable brand of calypso. He was a big character with a booming voice, a wide smile, and a great grasp of both English and French language, which was of great help to him on his Caribbean adventures in the 1960s. I first came to hear of Cobra via his appearance on a Soul Jazz compile – “Calypso: Musical Poetry In The Caribbean 1955-69” – on which he was a knockout with both of his inclusions; “Man on the Moon” and “Negro Heart”. My eyes lit up, therefore, when I chanced upon a post on the Global Groove blog containing his “Calipsos” LP, which I duly downloaded without further ado. Although it doesn’t quite live up to the standards of those aforementioned late 60s tracks, it’s a decent set with a few worthwhile moments. He’s rarely serious, and seems to be out to put smiles on faces. Luckily, he has enough style and charm to pull it off without ever being too cheesy.

On-board, there are 7 Cobra originals and 3 cover versions – “Congoman” (Mighty Sparrow, 1965), “China Children” (Mighty Terror and his Calypsonians, 1954) and “Bed Bug” (Mighty Spoiler, 1953). His own composition, “Hindu”, emerges as my favourite. It’s a fantastic track, chock-full of character with a particularly magnificent trombone. Cobra disguises himself as an Indian whilst attending a celebration in Nepal! A true story? I'd love to think so. I get the impression that he’s mad enough to have pulled it off. The album is out-of-print but has recently been made available for free download at the Global Groove.

n.b. Marketplace sites such as Popsike, CD Baby and Amazon have listed this LP as 1972. There's potentially a contradiction at Discogs due to the adjoining label release (Tamayo LPT-1083) being listed as 1977, so who really knows?

The Jukebox Rebel

A1 [03:55] 6.4.png Lord Cobra con The Beachers - Congoman (Slinger Francisco) Caribbean
A2 [04:38] 6.0.png Lord Cobra con The Beachers - Patois Town (Wilfred Berry Gonin) Caribbean
A3 [03:54] 5.5.png Lord Cobra con The Beachers - Sexy Old Lady (Wilfred Berry Gonin) Caribbean
A4 [05:18] 8.3.png Lord Cobra con The Beachers - Hindu (Wilfred Berry Gonin) Caribbean
B1 [04:02] 6.6.png Lord Cobra con The Beachers - China Children (Fitzgerald Henry) Caribbean
B2 [03:54] 5.7.png Lord Cobra con The Beachers - Water The Garden (Wilfred Berry Gonin) Caribbean
B3 [02:40] 4.7.png Lord Cobra con The Beachers - Bed Bug (Theophilus Phillip) Caribbean
B4 [04:02] 6.0.png Lord Cobra con The Beachers - Was An A Ful Sieht To See (Wilfred Berry Gonin) Caribbean
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