Celebrating Grupo X’s acclaimed output from the last 15 years, the album brings together a mix of hip-swaying, foot stomping, sun-kissed Latin and soul, with soaring vocals, driving percussion, heavy horns, tight arrangements and virtuoso performances all round.
Remastered dance floor fillers, such as Brand New Love, X-Perience and Reach, combine with chilled, head-nodding grooves, including Jonny’s Bugalu, Get Through To You and Won’t You Stay. Also included are two brand new tracks featuring Lisa Millett – the Latin R&B stomper Share it Out plus the soulful, salsa-tinged Waiting. Additional lead vocals are provided by the outstanding talents of jazz singer Julie Dexter and Venezuelan salsa star Carlos Peña.
Released just in time for the summer months, this is destined to be the soundtrack to a thousand BBQs and garden parties.
When Grupo X broke through in 2001 with their acclaimed debut album X-Posure and singles Brand New Love and X-Perience, their original and unique UK blend of Latin jazz and soul won them many friends worldwide. From specialist Latin and jazz radio stations across the USA to a host of international club DJs, Grupo X’s music was much loved and played extensively across the music spectrum.
Formed in London in 1997, by trombonist / composer/ arranger, Jonny Enright, Grupo X’s music is influenced by the ’60s and ’70s New York Latin sound, where Afro-Cuban music added elements of soul and jazz to the mix that would eventually evolve into this thing called “salsa”. Artists such as Eddie Palmieri, Willie Colon, Celia Cruz, Ray Barretto and Joe Bataan, to name but a few, have inspired Grupo X.
Grupo X’s pioneering, crossover Latin sound developed through regular appearances at London’s Jazz Cafe in the late 90s / early 2000s, as well as performances in the UK and around mainland Europe, both under their own name and as the first call backing band for visiting Latin music stars and legends from across the Atlantic ocean.
They have collaborated with many internationally-renowned artists over the years including “Mr Bongo” Jack Costanzo, US vibes jazz legend Dave Pike, West Coast percussionists Bobby Matos and Johnny Blas, Cuban pianist and Joe Cuba sideman Alfredo Rodriguez plus NYC salsa stars Jimmy Sabater (Fania Records) and trombonist Jimmy Bosch. In 2009 Grupo X toured the UK with the undisputed “King of Latin Soul”, Joe Bataan, followed by a further UK appearance with him at the 2010 Vintage Festival. He stated at the time that they were his favourite European backing band.
Grupo X have to date released 4 albums: X-Posure (2001), Food For Your Latin Soul (2006), Grupo X Remixed (2008) and As Hills Go By (2011). More info about releases here.
The Grupo X track Jonny’s Bugalu featured across the USA on the DSW Shoes TV commercial (Spring, 2007).
Grupo X’s music is all self-composed and arranged from within the band, an ensemble made up of some of the finest jazz, soul and Latin musicians and session players in London. Since day one, they have been proud to feature the stunning, soulful vocals of Lisa Millett, whose career has covered house, soul, funk and jazz. She has had top 20 hits and has recorded with ATFC, The All Seeing I, Lo Fidelity All Stars, Frankie Knuckles and Paul Oakenfold.
Grupo X full line up: Lisa Millett (ATFC/ Defected) on vocals, Al MacSween – piano (Ruby Turner/ Courtney Pine), Simon Edwards – bass (Fairground Attraction/ Talk Talk), Jim Le Messurier – drums (Penya/ Tito Allen), Pete Eckford – percussion (Chaz Jankel/ Leroy Hutson), Dave Pattman – percussion (Paul McCartney/ Cubanismo), Olly Drew – guitar (Freeloader/ MyVoxSongs), Finn Peters – flute, saxes (Mulatu Astatke/ Candi Staton), Sean Corby – trumpet, flugel (Jazz Jamaica/ Kobo Town) and band leader Jonny Enright – trombone, piano/keyboards (Gregory Isaacs / Elbow).
1. BRAND NEW LOVE (Enright / Le Messurier)
2. SHARE IT OUT (Enright)
3. GET THROUGH TO YOU (2015 Mix) (Enright / Drew)
4. THIS MUST BE THE PLACE (Le Messurier / Enright)
5. SUNSHINE (Enright / Le Messurier)
6. WAITING (Millett)
7. X-PERIENCE (Le Messurier / Enright)
8. WON’T YOU STAY? (Millett, Dawson, Enright)
9. MI TUMBAO (Enright / Peña)
10. WHATEVER YOU DREAM(YOU CAN BEGIN) (Enright / Corby)
11. REACH (Enright / Millett)
12. JONNY’S BUGALU (Enright / Peña / Pattman)
Lauren Laverne, BBC6Music
“U.K ensemble Grupo X blow our mind with their experimental sound where ’60s and ‘70s latin music meets jazz sonorities.”
DJ Blast, ScratchTheBlock.com
“A hip UK hybrid of overseas influences, the sort of cross-cultural blend that always makes British dancefloors seem a lot hipper than American ones!”
Dusty Groove America
“Hot off the stove. All the spices you need. Come and get it!”
Nat Creole Magazine, NYC
“Here we have something truly special by Grupo X… top-notch soul/jazz/funk/latin inspired production oozing with a masterly orchestration.”
“Throughout, vocalist Lisa Millett is exceptional – bringing the right balance of passion and tenderness to everything. It’s a sweet confection…a delight!”
Bill Buckley, soulandfunkandjazz.com
“Grupo X deliver soulful intensity and feel-good funky flow…impeccable musicianship and arrangement…..epic, rootsy and, with singer Lisa Millett out front, often spine-tingling.”
Ben Lovett, Blues and Soul Magazine
“Grupo X are at the top of their game.”
John Child, Descarga.com
“Inspirational…totally kick ass”
“One of the best and most original bands working in the latin music field today.”
John Armstrong, Latin Vibe
“A very hip group from London…strikingly hybrid…respectful of its New York roots, but also with a distinctly London vibe!”
Dusty Groove America
“Quality Latin music from London that’s totally British, not just a carbon copy.”
Lubi Jovanovic, Straight No Chaser Magazine & djlubi.com
“Sublime UK Latin soul that kicks from start to finish. Thoroughly recommended – quality stuff.”
Malcolm Prangell, Blues and Soul Magazine