With a talent for versatility, throughout his career Irwin “Wito” Rodriguez has been able to sing just about anything, from salsa to jazz, blues and rock. Rodriquez imbues each tune with a deep timbre and seductive charm that has always been part and parcel of his musical muse. Even in their most unfettered forms, his recorded performances speak so effectively that if he had not recorded another thing, his reputation would still be secured for life. The son of two proud Puerto Rican parents in Chicago, it was apparent early on that his life would be led by music.
Growing up Irwin “Wito” Rodriguez spent his free time playing guitar in rock bands, but in 1968 he decided to get back to his roots. A move to Puerto Rico allowed him to experience the Latin rhythms in a whole new way by way of amazing artists such as percussionist Chacon y Su Orquesta. A few years later, he was back in the Windy City and a part of Orquesta La Justicia opening for Ismael Rivera, Ray Barreto, Willie Colon, El Gran Combo and the legendary Fania All-Stars.
Joining the US Army in 1973 found the budding musician deployed to Germany. There he kept the music alive and well, taking singing lessons with Opera singer Barbara Sutton while simultaneously creating two bands; El Conjunto Sabor and La Sonora Antillana. Rodriguez managed to do and accomplish a lot from the ‘60s throughout the early ‘90s but then took a break. He released new in 2015, and hasn’t look back since.
Today, with a string of releases under his belt, Rodriquez has been nominated for a Hollywood Media Music Award, as well as honored at the Miami Fox Music Awards, for his English-meets-Salsa beats.
2022 sees Wito Rodriguez introduce us to his version of the Lou Rawls classic “You’ll Never Find Another Love Like Mine”. Blessed with a four-octave vocal range, Rawls’ smooth, classy elegance is beautifully matched by Rodriquez’s soulful elegance and the song’s Latin twist.
Irwin “Wito” Rodriguez’s cover is a superbly soulful, horn-fueled slice of real love and longing, in which the song takes the form of a compelling, big-band Latin groove. There are no smoke and mirrors, no attempts to pander to modern mainstream ears. Just the classic, breezy, eloquent sound that has been Wito’s hallmark for years.
The song works, because Wito so effortlessly recaptures the magic that originally made “You’ll Never Find Another Love Like Mine” one of the biggest hits of it’s time.
In a genre often overwhelmed with flash and flamboyance, Wito Rodriguez is grounded by the core of his craft. The song “You’ll Never Find Another Love Like Mine”, solidifies the notion that Rodriquez knows how to set the mood and tone on any cut he lays his voice on.
It’s to Rodriquez’s credit that he’s able to take the successful style and sound associated with Lou Rawls, on this track, and wrap them all together in his own personal aesthetic. All that said, ultimately Wito Rodriguez is to be commended for capturing the many layers of emotion that come with this song, plus adding many of his own.