The Jazz.com Blog
April 15, 2008 · 0 comments
Below are some responses to jazz.com's recent blog discussion on Brazilian songs. (Readers are invited to send in suggestions and comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.)
First up is Andrea Mann, who recently returned to the UK after the engagement in Malaysia written about in these pages. Mann comments in follow-up to my article on “Great Brazilian Songs Not Written by Antonio Carlos Jobim.
To add to the list: I have a soft spot for “Baby” by Caetano Veloso (English lyrics by Os Mutantes). I discovered it via Bebel Gilberto's version... it's the beautiful opener on her eponymous album from 2004. And I know it's pretty silly, but “Crickets Sing For Anamaria” by Marcos Valle is really quite fab; and commercial (even Emma Bunton from the Spice Girls released it as a single).Andrea Mann
One of the most knowledgeable visitors to jazz.com is Stefano. He is an invaluable source of tips on lesser known music worth hearing, and over the years has pointed me in the direction of many outstanding CDs I might otherwise have missed. Here he provides a thoughtful checklist of Brazilian songs that deserve to be better known.
Joyce: “Feminina” from the 1980 album of the same name. Check out a wonderful live version on YouTube (with Maurício Maestro on bass). Also track down the tune “Clareana” (not jazz but beautiful). Great voice, pitch, rhythm, guitar work.... she's near the top of my list!
Maurício Maestro - Joyce: “Mistérios.” Maurício Maestro is the bass player and a singer for Boca Livre (whose version of this song is excellent). The Joyce version is also on the Feminina album and is gorgeous.
Toninho Horta: “Beijo Partido” (Broken Kiss) There is a bilingual version on his album Diamond Land with English lyrics (and vocals) by Joyce. And if wordless vocals count, check out “Soccer Ball” (Bola De Futebol) from his Durango Kid part 1 album. Finally, listen to “Aqui, Oh!” (Check This Out!) from his self titled album on World Pacific. Co-written with Fernando Brant, it's a delight. You can also here some Pat Metheny influence here, as Pat was getting into the Brazilian thing at the time (1980). Pat is on this album (not this track) and I think they gave a lot to each other. You may recall that Horta was also a Clube Da Esquina member.
Lô Borges: Another Clube De Esquina graduate -- I'm particularly fond of “Nuvem Cigana,” from the 1981 album of the same name (Boca Livre also does a wonderful version of this song), and “O Trem Azul” (co-written by Ronaldo Bastos from the Clube De Esquina album). "Clube Da Esquina No.2" is another excellent composition. It can be found on his A Via-Láctea album from 1979 as well as the version on the Clube De Esquinaalbum. It's fun to hear Borges sing on his own album version (with more complete lyrics too).
Roberto Menescal: “O Barquinho” (Little Boat). Co-written with Ronaldo Bôscoli, this song has been recorded a zillion times -- so pick your version (I like Gilberto's 1961 version off of The Legendary Joao Gilberto collection album).
João Gilberto: “Bim Bom.” Let's not forget that he could write too. “Hô-Bá-Lá-Lá” is another example of his bossa writing. (Both can be found on the The Legendary Joao Gilberto collection album.)
Carlos Lyra: “Maria Ninguém.” Check out Gilberto's 1959 recording from The Legendary Joao Gilberto collection album.
Marcos Valle: “Samba de Verao” ("Summer Samba" aka "So Nice"). Like “O Barquinho” it's another instantly recognizable Brazilian song NOT written by Jobim. Bebel Gilberto does a nice version.
Vinicius Cantuária: The "nova" bossa nova guy. A good cut would be “O Grande Lançe É Fazer Romançe” from his Sol No Cara CD (co-written with Caetano Veloso). A very pretty song. Actually, the whole album is quite good.
Ana Carolina: Great, smokey voice. Check out her song Mais Que Isso. Very catchy both rhythmically and melodically. See/hear it here at YouTube.
Another guy you might enjoy is Lenine. He's written some wonderful pop but he strays away from jazz idioms a bit. If you like Dave Matthews, you'll like him (though he's more melodic than Matthews). Check out the Na Pressão album or his CD with percussionist Suzano called Olho de Peixe. Very rhythmic, syncopated stuff.
Finally, Badi Assad should probably be mentioned for her works involving vocals. Her guitar work is (of course) amazing and she has a fantastic feel for percussive effects. She doesn't hurt the eyes either :-).Stefano
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