Saturday

Did You Know About These Obscure Gypsy Kings Song Covers?

The Gypsy Kings have been pushing the boundaries of Flamenco since their inception in the 1970s. Not only are they a mixed group of Gypsies from France, Spain and even Morocco, but they take from their origins and mix those styles together into a rather tasty "buena salada" (nice salad). Many of us who are fans know about their most popular hits such as "Bamboleo", "Bailame" or "Djobi, Djoba". But after a failed arm-wrestling debacle with a Chinese-Child-and-Youth-Care-Provider friend of mine who, I swear, is 12 inches shorter than me, we began to talk about the Gypsy Kings song covers that have somehow fallen off into obscurity.
The 3 that eventually, after great debate, came to our minds were these...
Hotel California
Hotel California was originally written and recorded by The Eagles and released in 1977. One of the most famous Rock songs in Rock history. Glenn Frey from The Eagles has said ""For us, 'Hotel California' was definitely thinking and writing outside the box. We had never written any song like it before." They covered the tune in 1988 singing only in Spanish (sorry non-Spanish speakers).The version gained notoriety in Europe because of its Flamenco flair. But not too many people, surprisingly, know of this awesome Flamenco cover to a famous Rock tune. One could say that it was almost fate when they decided to cover this tune as both Don and Glenn of The Eagles commented when first hearing Felder's demo of the tune "Gosh, this is like Spanish reggae rock..."
A Mi Manera
A Mi Manera or better known as "My Way", which was originally a French tune written by Claude Fran├žois and Jacques Revaux. Later it was Paul Anka who wrote English lyrics to it and had Frank Santra sing the version we know today. The Gypsy Kings cover is a more upbeat version of the old 1967 crooner hit. It features their unique Flamenco flavor along with swirling arpeggios, punctuating golpeados and rolling rasgueados. All sung in Spanish, (of course) this is a great contribution to the Gypsy Kings repertoire of music.
Chan Chan
Originally written by Cuban composer Compay Segundo in 1987 and made famous by the Buena Vista Social Club CD in the 1990s, this Gypsy Kings cover is more like a Rockin Cuban Salsa fanfare. It comes fully equipped with blasting trumpets, insane guitar solos, and who could forget, their signature raspy Gitano vocals. Recorded on their album "Pasajero" in 2007.

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