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World Music CD Reviews Greater Latin America

Bimbo

By Michael Stone
Published December 15, 2006

Presenta: Reggaeton 100x35
Urban Box Office

The recent gas price spike inspired Puerto Rican hip-hop artist Bimbo, whose new all-reggaeton release includes the chart-busting “Fuleteame el tanque” (“fill up my tank”). The music video tie-in, set in an imaginary “Bimbolina” gas station, features Bimbo as a price-gouging magnate who sits counting his money as scantily clad, provocatively gyrating females prance around him. The video’s political message comes home as Bimbo stuffs bills into the garters of a parade of women wearing masks of Saddam Hussein, Osama bin Laden, Condoleezza Rice and George W. Bush, paying them off for helping to keep gas prices high. On his “Tailgate Party Tour,” Bimbo has reportedly given away 20,000 free gas cards to fans thronging his CD promo events, held (where else?) in gas stations in the Bronx, Washington, D.C., Miami, Dallas and Los Angeles. The artist also has a new Cartoon Network series, Bimbo And Friends. While he grew up on bomba, plena and salsa, these are not strong influences in his own music, whose infectious riffs, heavy beats and sassy female choruses have helped him top the charts.