Monday, December 4, 2017

Antonio Adolfo: Hybrido

Kudos to Antonio Adolfo, who just received a Grammy nomination for the best Latin Jazz album for Hybrido – From Rio To Wayne Shorter. On it, Adolfo interprets standards by Shorter, including "Speak No Evil" and "E.S.P." Antonio is backed by the likes of Lula Galvão (electric guitar) and Jorge Helder (double bass). Shorter is a legendary composer and saxophonist who played with Art Blakey and Miles Davis before co-founding the fusion group Weather Report. He has also collaborated with Milton Nascimento and other Brazilian musicians for decades. Adolfo is a master of fusing jazz and Brazilian styles, has composed MPB standards such as "Sá Marina" (Pretty World), and has been an important figure in Brazilian music since the 1960s. Here, he adds his usual deft touch to some great material. Highly recommended. The album was also nominated for a "Latin Grammy" award in 2017 in the Best Latin Jazz/Jazz category. Available from: AAM Records, 2017.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Olá Brasil

In 1999, I wrote the liner notes for a Starbucks Coffee compilation CD, Olá Brasil: Rhythms of Joy and Longing. It focused on bossa nova and MPB and was quirky in its mix of tunes but fun to listen to. Pink Martini's "Brazil" (their version of Ary Barroso's landmark exaltation samba "Aquarela do Brasil") was the most unconventional pick while Elis Regina and Antonio Carlos Jobim's "Águas de Março" and Luiz Bonfá's "Manhã de Carnaval" were conventional yet gratifying choices. The CD is available used from Amazon and elsewhere. The CD liner notes can be read below, followed by a few music videos of the selections.

Videos of Song Selections

Vinícius Cantuária, "Amor Brasileiro"

Elis Regina and Antonio Carlos Jobim, "Águas de Março"

Pink Martini performing "Brazil" ("Aquarela do Brasil")

Read about Brazilian Music

The Brazilian Sound: Samba, Bossa Nova
and the Popular Music of Brazil

by Chris McGowan and Ricardo Pessanha (Temple University Press)
(the leading guide to Brazilian music in English;
available on Amazon worldwide)

by Chris McGowan
(interviews with iconic figures from Jobim
and Airto to Djavan and Gal Costa)


Friday, February 24, 2017

Carnaval 2017 in Brazil

Carnaval will be celebrated all over Brazil from Saturday through Tuesday, with plenty of early and late celebrations as well. Rio de Janeiro, Recife (and Olinda), and Salvador all have Carnaval street celebrations with millions of people over several days. Samba and marcha (Rio), axé music (Salvador), and frevo and maracatu (Recife/Olinda) are among the most popular Carnaval styles of music. Many popular Brazilian musicians will lead blocos or dance with samba schools. Funk carioca / pop singer Anitta (two images below) will lead the "bloco das poderosas" in Salvador this year.

Everyone can participate in Carnaval...

Rio Maracatu parades along Ipanema Beach in Rio 

Maracatu alfaia drum

Carnaval in Olinda

Read about the history of Brazilian Carnaval, samba, frevo, maracatu, axé music, funk carioca and more in The Brazilian Sound: Samba, Bossa Nova and the Popular Music of Brazil, which is available in print and digital editions through Amazon worldwide.

Also See
by Chris McGowan
(interviews with iconic figures from Jobim
and Airto to Djavan and Gal Costa)