You can say what you like about the 1980s, which was never my favorite decade of pop music until it dawned on me that that this was the period in which the Gipsy Kings conquered the world – and it’s remained theirs ever since. Like the late Bob Marley and the Wailers, they are that great rarity, an authentic world music act that has achieved the extreme mass-marketability of a pop music act, and sustained it for over 30 years. Born of authentic Romany musical traditions and a combination of French and Spanish roots, the Gipsys embrace a wide range of musical styles and Pan-Global rhythms, including flamenco, salsas, rhumbas, pasodobles, and tangos. They’re equally loved for their big original hits, like “ "Bamboléo" as well as their interpretations of classic pop songs well known in the USA, like the Italian “Volare,” the French “My Way” (as a Sinatra fan, I much prefer their version, titled “A Mi Manera”) and “Hotel California,” which, again, is vastly preferable to the original by the Eagles. Wear something comfortable when you come to the Beacon on Saturday or to NJPAC on Sunday, I suspect you’re going to be on your feet and cheering and dancing most of the night.
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