New York City has a large Puerto Rican population.
At the time of this recording, the community was under attack in ways that are scarcely imaginable today.
In the Bronx, scores of blocks of housing and businesses had been taken by eminent domain and destroyed to make room for highways; essential city services like police and fire department were withdrawn; banks refused to make loans to build, purchase and improve property; landlords set fire to apartments to collect insurance money.
Employment and educational opportunities were scarce, young men were returning home from Vietnam with drug problems, the crime rate was sky high.
Did music play a role in helping this community survive and even thrive in the face of crushing challenges?
I think it’s pretty obvious from this video it did.
For more information on this time:
More from this amazing day in the park in 1972.
Yes that is Eddie and Charlie Palmieri together.
By the way, look at that audience. Thousands of enthusiastic young people grooving to Latin Jazz.
When’s the last time you went you went to a concert with energy like this?
– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube
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