World, Latin, & Reggae, Blues, Folk, & Country

Joe Bataan

When: Sat., Oct. 13, 8 & 10 p.m. 2012

African-American/Filipino musician Joe Bataan is known as the "King of Latin Soul," though the title is contentious. Nuyorican artist Joey Pastranaalluded to the name in a 1967 song of the same title (sample lyrics: Everybody knowsI'm the king of Latin soul). Bataan's official biography claims Latin soul artists existed before Bataan, but they, like Pastrana, were actually boogaloo artists, playing a blend of R&B, soul, and Latin. Which, on paper sounds a lot like Latin soul, though Bataan wants the distinction to be made. His music is nonetheless informed by boogaloo and doo-wop and by having grown up in Spanish Harlem, where as a youth he ran with a Puerto Rican gang until he landed in jail. Less than a year after his release, he was playing and recording. Singing in Spanish and English, Bataan gets soulful and funky on Seventies disco number "Mestizo," and weary and weathered on ballad "Castle on a Hill." Bataan performs at Yoshi's Oakland (510 Embarcadero West, Oakland) on Saturday, Oct. 13. 10 p.m., $35, $40.

Lenika Cruz

Price: $35, $40

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