The Ghetto Brothers were a gang founded in New York City’s South Bronx in the late 1960s. They eventually spread to much of the Northeastern United States. Like the Young Lords, they were involved in Puerto Rican nationalism, including, in the case of the Ghetto Brothers, an association with the then-new Puerto Rican Socialist Party. Ghetto Brothers founder Benjamin Melendez, who left the organization in 1976, was also known as a guitarist. He led a band, also known as the Ghetto Brothers, which included his late brother Victor Melendez on drums. They released one album in 1972, which had only informal, local distribution. In the past ten years, “Power Fuerza”, which has become shrouded with mystery, has fetched quadruple digits on ebay and become one of the most sought after New York records of all time.
Now one of the most enigmatic, purely New York records of all time is finally available to the masses. The Ghetto Brothers 45 “Ghetto Brothers Power” b/w “I Saw A Tear”, which is a single taken off their full-length “Power Fuerza” LP has been polished up and re-mastered from the original record. “Ghetto Brother Power” is an anthemic powerhouse complete with wah-wah guitar, gang vocals, congas, and hard-hitting drums. It reminds us how strong and influential the Ghetto Brothers message was. Side B’s “I Saw A Tear” is a heart wrenching ballad that has that classic Ghetto Brothers sound.