Salsoul Orchestra

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Salsoul Orchestra
Origin New York City, New York
Genres Dance, soul, disco, pop
Labels Salsoul Records
Past members Vincent Montana Jr
Ronnie Baker
Earl Young
Norman Harris
Gordon Edwards
Bobby Eli
Larry Washington

The Salsoul Orchestra was the backing band of session musicians for many acts on New York City label, Salsoul Records and, under its own name, recorded several hit singles and albums between 1975 and 1982.


The orchestra was formed in 1974 and was disbanded in 1982. Their music featured elements of Philadelphia soul, funk, Latin and disco. The Salsoul Orchestra included up to 50 members and was put together for Salsoul Records by Philadelphia musician and conductor, Vincent Montana, Jr.. Montana wrote, arranged, conducted, produced and played on many of the orchestra's tracks until 1978, including a gold-selling Christmas album. [1]

The Salsoul Orchestra inially consisted of many of the original members of Philadelphia International's MFSB, who had moved to Salsoul as the result of a disagreement with producers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff over finances. Other members began performing as The Ritchie Family and as John Davis and the Monster Orchestra. On later MFSB and Philadelphia International recordings, Gamble & Huff used a new rhythm section which resulted in a slightly different sound.

The orchestra's biggest chart singles were 1976's reworked version of the standard, "Tangerine" (pop #18, R&B #36) and "Nice 'N' Naasty" (R&B #20, pop #30) later in the same year.

When Montana left Salsoul, the orchestra recorded a final album at Sigma Sound Studios in Philadelphia mainly with producer Bunny Sigler. The orchestra's last three albums were recorded in New York City with local session players and producers, including Patrick Adams and Tom Moulton.

The orchestra's track, "Love Break (Ooh I Love It)" has been sampled in rap songs such as 50 Cent's "Candyshop" and Eric B & Rakim's "Paid in Full".

Partial discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Year Album Peak chart positions Record label

1975 The Salsoul Orchestra 14 20 47 Salsoul
1976 Nice 'n' Naasty 61 23
Christmas Jollies 38
1977 Magic Journey 61 51
Cuchi-Cuchi (with Charo) 100
1978 Up the Yellow Brick Road 117 52
How Deep Is Your Love
1979 Street Sense
How High 201
1981 Christmas Jollies II 170
1982 Heat It Up
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.

Compilation albums[edit]

Year Album Peak chart positions Record label
1978 Greatest Disco Hits: Music for Non-Stop Dancing 97 Salsoul
1994 Anthology
2005 The Anthology Suss'd
2015 The Salsoul Orchestra Story: 40th Anniversary Collection Groove Line
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.


  • "Salsoul Hustle" (1975) Billboard Hot 100 - #76 (charted for 6 weeks, Salsoul 8701/ Salsoul 2002)[1]
  • "Tangerine" (1976) - Billboard Hot 100 - #18 (charted for 13 weeks, Salsoul 2004)[1]
  • "You're Just The Right Size" (1976) - Billboard Hot 100 - #88 (charted for 5 weeks, Salsoul 2007)[1]
  • "Nice 'N' Naasty" (1976) - Billboard Hot 100 - #30 (charted for 14 weeks, Salsoul 2011)[1]
  • "Ritzy Mambo" (1977) - Billboard Hot 100 - #99 (charted for 1 week, Salsoul 2018)[1]
  • "Getaway" - Billboard Bubbling Under - #105[4]
  • "Dance Little Bit Closer" feat Charo - Billboard Bubbling Under - #104/Dance Club Play #18[4]

Other songs recorded[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Top Pop Singles 1955-1999. Joel Whitburn. 2000. Record Research Inc. p. 429. ISBN 0-89820-139-X
  2. ^ a b c "US Charts > Salsoul Orchestra". Billboard. Retrieved 2016-02-11. 
  3. ^ "CAN Charts > Salsoul Orchestra". RPM. Retrieved 2016-02-11. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f The Billboard Albums. 6th ed. Joel Whitburn. 2006. Record Research Inc. p. 914. ISBN 0-89820-166-7