Formed in Bristol to bring the world of Boogaloo to the UK, the Shing a Lings have been delighting crowds with their funky Latin American sounds and exuberance. Comprising a cast of six who between them share vocals and play flute, saxophone, trombone, guitar, piano, bass, drums and percussion, they punch well above their weight.
Boogaloo is a style of music that mixes Latin dance rhythms, such as mambo, cha cha and son montuno, with doo-wop and soul. Mongo Santamaria’s version of Herbie Hancock’s “Watermelon Man” was the first big hit of the genre, followed by Ray Barretto’s “El Watusi” and “Got Myself a Good Man” by Pucho & His Latin Soul Brothers. Shing a Ling is another term for this style of music and also for the freestyle dance which goes with it.