Rob Price
Gutbrain Records
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2022 June 20 • Monday

The 731st Soundtrack of the Week is the "Original TV Special Sound Track" for The Trini Lopez Show!

The first side of this record finds Lopez in the company of singer Nancy Ames and none other than The Ventures!

All of them join forces on the first song, "Twenty-Five Miles", which has horn arrangements that quote "Sunshine of Your Love".

Then Trini Lopez does "Games People Play", a bouncy song thatm, like everything he did, is thoroughly enjoyable thanks to his fantastic guitar playing and lovely voice.

After that The Ventures take the stage for "Hawaii Five-0". This is on YouTube and it's quite clear that they're not actually playing. The instruments aren't plugged into anything and the drummer is pretending that the floor tom is a timpani while the Farfisa player pretends that his keyboard is an entire orchestra.

Lopez joins The Ventures after that for a cover of "Light My Fire". It's pretty good! They give it a lighter, breezier energy than the original and Lopez finds ways to make it slightly more melodics. The Ventures might actually be playing for this. Certainly it's Lopez singing and the instrumentation matches what's on stage.

A song called "Reza" follows, a duet for Lopez and Ames. This is a fantastic Latin jazzy kind of number that reallys wings and is very pretty with some nice harmonic directions in it.

Simon & Garfunkel's "Mrs. Robinson" gets the same Ames/Lopez duet treatment and it's a really cool rendition. It combines some simmering garage rock energy with soulful and affecting vocal harmonies that bring just a touch of pathos to the lyrics.

You could never escape this kind of thing, however, without hearing a song that you've already heard way too many times. Lopez and Ames and The Ventures team up for the obligatory "Land of a Thousand Dances". It's not bad but this is the least interesting segment here.

The B Side is all Lopez. First there's a whale of a medley: "Gotta Travel On/ Down by the Riverside/Marianne/Heart of My Heart/Goody Goody/Oh, Lonesome Me/This Land Is Your Land/Bye Bye Blackbird/If I Had a Hammer". Whew!

They're all done with the same up tempo groove, driven by Lopez's strong rhythm playing and soaring vocals. He's backed up mostly by just bass and drums and the audience's hand-clapping, though some horns do come in eventually for the big finish.

And then he closes with "La Golondrina", which is just a short snippet of a slow number while Lopez gives some closing remarks, then a blast of energy from the horns,