“I wish I had made it in Jazz, but what the hell ??”

How many musicians do you know who’ve jammed with Bird can also claim the title “Godfather of Disco” ?

Vince Montana is Philly’s most successful example of a great jazz musician who ended up making a name for himself in a form other than jazz.

After years on the road, Vince, like many other Philly cats, did the Vegas thing (like Red Rodney and Billy Root), but eventually wound up home with a family to support.  Not content to play Bar Mitvahs for a living, Vince got into the studio scene, eventually hooking up with Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff of Philadelphia International Records.  The Sound of Philadelphia became known world-wide as a combination of Soul, R&B, Latin and Disco.  Shortly after, Vince dreamed up the “Salsoul Orchestra“, a 35 member aggregation which gave work to more than a few hungry jazzmen from the Delaware Valley.

Although he’d achieved commercial success, Vince Montana was still one of the most technically clean, tasteful and soulful jazz vibraphonists in the country.  By the way, Vince’s daughter Denise is a terrific singer in any style, and has been working around the suburbs lately.



KEY: PL = Played on recording as Vibraharpist or Percussionist, Tympani,

Marimba, Orchestra Bells and Chimes

AC = Arranged musical composition and conducted recording session

P = Produced recording session and booked all musicians.

WC = As Writer and Publisher of the composition recorded.


PL Frankie Avalon Solid Gold Single “Venus” (Single) 1959

PL Soul Survivors “Expressway To Your Heart” (Single) 1967

PL Cliff Nobles hit Instrumental “The Horse” (Single) 1968

PL Eddie Holman “Hey There Lonely Girl” (Single) 1969

PL Delfonics (LP) I’m Sorry, “La La Means I Love You” (Single) 1969

PL The Intruders “Save The Children” including the hit song

“I’ll Always Love My Mama” “When We Get Married”(LP)

“Cowboys to Girls”, their first album, “The Energy of Love”(LP)

“The Intruders Greatest Hits”, including “Together and United” 1969-1972

PL Jerry Butler Five LP’s – “You and Me” “The Ice Man Cometh”

“Soul Goes On” “The Spice of Life” “Ice on Ice” 1969-1972

PL The O’Jays “The O’Jays in Philadelphia” (LP) including

“One Night Affair” “Backstabber”(LP)including: “Love Train”,

“992 Arguments”, and the title cut, “Backstabbers”

“Family Reunion”(LP) including “I Love Music” 1969-1975

PL Wilson Pickett “Wilson Pickett In Philadelphia”(LP) 1970

PL Dusty Springfield “A Brand New Me” (LP) 1970

PL The Assembled Multitude (LP) “Overture For Tommy” 1970

PL The Philly Ambassadors “The Ambassadors” (LP) 1970

PL/AC The Electric Indians “The Electric Indians” (LP) “Keem-o-Sabe”

WC was Vincent’s first gold single 1970

PL/AC Cissie Houston (Whitney Mother) Cissy Houston on Janice Records 1971

PL The Family “Family Affair” (LP)

PL The Stylistics (LP) “You are Everything”, ” Betcha By Golly Wow”

“Stop, Look, Listen To Your Heart”, “People Make The World Go

Round” 1971

PL The Stylistics “Round 2” (LP) “I’m Stone in Love With You”

“Break Up To Make Up” 1972

PL Joe Simon “Drowning in the Sea of Love: (LP) 1972

PL Ronny Dyson “One Man Band” (LP) 1972

PL Dick Jenson “Dick Jenson” (LP) 1973

PL/AC The True Reflections “Where I’m Coming From”, “Helpless Man”

“Look at all the Lonely People” 1973

PL Johnny Mathis “I’m Coming Home” (LP) including such hits

as “Foolish” “Stone In Love With You” “Stop Look and Listen

to Your Heart” 1973

PL Billy Paul, “Ebony Woman” (LP) “Going East(LP) “The 360 Degrees

of Billy Paul” (LP) including the Gold single, “Me and Mrs. Jones”

“Feeling Good at the Cadillac Club”(LP) 1972-73

PL Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes “I Miss You” (LP) “If You Don’t 1972-81

Know Me By Now” and “I Miss You”

All Things Happen in Time (LP)

PL Harold Melvin and The Blue Notes, “Black and Blue”

AC “Is There A Place For Me” “Caberet” “The Love I Lost” 1973

PL The Spinners, “The Spinners”(LP) including the One Million Sellers

“Could It Be I’m Falling in Love” and “I’ll Be Around” 1973

PL/AC The First Choice (LP) “Armed and Extremely Dangerous” and 1974

The Player LP) “Guilty”, “Guilty Instrumental”(Single)

PL/AC The Whispers “Bingo” (LP) “The True Reflection”(LP) 1973/74

PL/AC The Ebonys “The Ebonys”(LP) 1973

PL/AC The Jacksons 5 Third Album (LP) 1973

PL/AC Brenda and The Tabulaions “Brenda and The Tabulations”(LP) 1973

PL Patty La Belle “La Belle”(LP) 1973

PL/AC The Tramps “Disco Inferno”(single) and (LP) 1973

PL Lou Rawls “Lou Rawls” (LP) 1973

PL/AC Eddie Kendricks “Eddie Kendricks”(LP) 1973

PL/AC Vic Damone “Vic Damone”(LP) 1973

PL/AC Jean Carne “Jean Carne”(LP) 1973

PL Barbara Mason “Give Me Your Love” (LP) including the hits

AC “Yes I’m Ready”, “When I Fall In Love”, “Everything I Own”

“Let Me in Your Life” and “Bed and Board” 1973

PL/AC First Choice (LP) “Armed and Extremely Dangerous”

“Running Out of Fools” “A Boy Named Junior”

“Smarty Pants” 1973

PL Laura Nyro and LaBelle “Gonna Take A Miracle” 1973

PL Billy Paul “War of The Gods” (LP) 1973

PL The O’Jays “Ship Ahoy”(LP) 1973

PL The Stylistics “Rock and Roll Baby” (LP) 1973

PL/AC Blue Magic “The Magic of The Blue” (LP)

“Let Me Be The One”(Single)“Looking For a Friend”(Single) 1974

PL/AC Blue Magic “Blue Magic (LP) “Look Me Up” “Side Show

“I Just Don’t Want To Be Lonely” “Answer To My Prayer”

“Tear It Down” 1974

PL/AC The Delfonics “Alive and Kicking” (LP) “Think It Over”

“I Don’t Want To Make You Wait”, “I Told You So”

“Start All Over” 1974

PL Billy Paul “Live in Europe”(LP) 1974

PL William DeVaughn “Be Thankful For What You Got” (LP) 1974

PL Nancy Wilson “Now I’m a Woman” (LP) 1974

PL/AC Blue Magic, Major Harris, Margie Joseph, “Live”

“Musical Extravaganza Lights Up The Latin Casino

Arranged and Conducted Live on Stage Production 1975

PL The Three Degrees “International”(LP) 1975

PL Disco Pak “Get Down With The Philly Sound” (LP) 1975

PL/AC The Sal Soul Orchestra “The Sal Soul Orchestra”(LP) 1975

WC/P “Sal Soul Hustle” “Chicago Bus Stop”(Ooh I Love It)

“You’re Just The Right Size, “Sal Soul Rainbow”

“Tangerine” “Love Letters”

PL/AC The Sal Soul Orchestra “The Sal Soul Strings”(LP) 1975 -1978

WC/P “How Deep is Your Love” (LP)

PL/AC Sal Soul Orchestra, “Electric Lady”(LP) Featuring

WC/P Artist Carol Williams 1976

PL/AC The Sal Soul Orchestra “Christmas Jollies”(LP) 1976

WC/P Sold over 6 Million 1976 to 1997

PL/AC The Sal Soul Orchestra “Nice N’ Nasty”(LP) 1976

WC/P “It’s Good For the Soul” “NIce ‘N’ Nasty”

“Ritzy Mambo

PL/AC Fat Larry’s Band(LP) “Feel It” and “Center City” 1976


PL/AC Astrud Gilberto (LP) “That Girl From Ipanema” 1976

PL/AC Grace Jones “Portfolio” “Tomorrow”

“Send in The Clowns” “What I Did For Love” 1977

PL/AC The Sal Soul Orchestra “Magic Journey”(LP) 1977

WC including the Grammy nominated single “Getaway”

“Magic Bird of Fire” “Runaway”

PL/AC The Sal Soul Orchestra (LP)

WC “Disco Boogie ” Super Hits For Nonstop Dancing ” 1977

PL/AC The Sal Soul Orchestra’s Greatest Hits”(LP)

WC “Music For Nonstop Dancing” Rereleased 1975, 1976, & 1978.

PL/AC “Charo and The Sal Soul Orchestra” (LP) 1977

WC “Dance A Little Bit Closer”

PL/AC The Sal Soul Saturday Night Disco Party (LP) 1978


PL Gordon Lowe “Follow The Sound”

PL Monk Montgomery: “Reality” (LP) 1974

PL/AC M.F.S.B. “M.F.S.B.” “Poinciana” “My One And Only Love”

All M.F.S.B. (LP’s) = Freddies Dead” “Philadelphia Freedom”

“M.F.S.B. Summertime” “M.F.S.B. Universal Love”

“Love is The Message”

PL Dee Dee Sharp “Happy ‘bout The Whole Thing”

*N.B. All Sal Soul Orchestra Albums including any 1973 to Present compilations or variations.

PL/AC The Sal Soul Orchestra “Anthology” (LP) 1995

WC which including 15 original releases by Montana

PL Teddy Pendegrass “This One’s For You” (LP) 1980

PL/AC Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes (LP) 1981

“All Things Happen in Time”


PL/AC Montana “I Love Music” 1978

WC/P “A Dance Fantasy Inspired By Close Encounters of The Third Kind” 1978

“Goody Goody” “#1 Dee Jay and It Looks Like Love(Singles) 1979 Featuring Denise Montana

PL/AC Tito Puente and India (LP) Count Basie Orchestra 1996

WC “To Be In Love” and “Love Me”

PL/AC Mondo Groso (LP) “Closer” (Single) 1997

PL/AC The Braxtons (LP) “The Boss” 1997

PL/AC Randy Crawford (LP) “Wishing On a Star” 1997

“Bye Bye” “Johnny” “Changes” “Almaz”

PL/AC Nuyorican Soul (LP) “Runaway”, “Nautilus”

WC “Sweet Tears” “I Am the Black Gold of the Sun” 1997

“Its Allright” vocals by Jocelyn Brown

PL/AC Incognito (LP) Jocelyn Brown “Always There” 1997

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