Thursday, March 29, 2012

Raca Negra Volume 36 CD Radar Records

The long awaited follow up to the magnificent "Boa Sorte" CHEGOU! Finally this new CD from Raca Negra is available stateside! It's about time! Is Volume 36 the equal of "Boa Sorte?" Hmmm, although I miss Luiz Carlos' "filho" Rafa on the new disc, it is awfully good! What's not to like? Sofisti-suingue at its most elegant, wildly cool horn arrangements, catchy refrains and immense doses of the "ginga" for which Brasil is famous all adorn this and all Raca Negra releases. Is this music the equal of that of Caetano, Gil, Milton, Ivan, Djavan, Joao Bosco, Chico Buarque, etc? Probably not, but who cares? This is the pop music by which one leads his or her life. It is truly the music of the people and has no gringo equivalent ....and females love it! I have included "Foi num Domingo" for your enjoyment! Difficult to obtain but well worth the effort! In a shocking pronouncement, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! Pagode p'ra sempre!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Ao Vivo em Copacabana - Claudia Leitte DVD Universal Music

Claudia Leitte's DVD, "Ao Vivo em Copacabana" sets the new standard for both performance and technical sophistication! One can only imagine the logistical difficulties in staging a show of this magnitude! Although I love Ivete and admire Daniela, Claudia is the reigning queen of axe'! The sound, the band, the dancers, Claudia's sexuality, sensuality, "suingue" and sensational samba only serve to confirm her arrival as the latest heiress to the throne. She was the lead singer for the well known axe' band BABADO NOVO and her former band mates appear on the DVD. Guest appearances by Wando, Daniela Mercury, Gabriel o Pensador and the great Carlinhos Brown only add to the majesty of this concert. The package contains two dvds, the second of which is a documentary concerning the life and career of Claudia. Interesting, and sometimes even touching, but entirely secondary to the concert dvd. Worth owning, for sure, but one will watch it MUCH less frequently than the captivating show. These dvds can be difficult to find at times, and expensive, but they are well worth both the time and the money! "Doce Paixao", a hit with Babado Novo, is included here as a sample of Claudia's axe' skills! ENJOY!  VIVA AXE'   !!!!!!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Cantando Historias - Ivan Lins DVD EMI

This is yet another stellar DVD which should be in the collection of all those who cherish the world's most beautiful pop music! Ivan Lins is one of the greatest of  all the hallowed MPB artists. His toons have been recorded by everyone from Quincy Jones to Ella Fitzgerald. His lyricists have been among the best "poetas" in a country known for "letras." Ivan's status as an international superstar affords him the opportunity to hire only the best musicians for his band and this version is no different. He is surrounded by long time partners Theo Lima on drums and the incredible Marco Brito on keyboards and sinfona. His "convidados" are stars in their own right; Jorge Vercilo, Simone and Zizi Possi all contribute individually and then join together for an impromptu rendition of Ivan's humanist anthem, "Bandeira do Divino."  Jorge Vercilo's duet with Ivan on the classic "Guarde nos Olhos" is a highlight not only due to the incredible vocal performance of a hauntingly beautiful song, but also due to the obvious love and respect which Jorge displays for the master and his music. I have had both the honor and pleasure of seeing Ivan live more than a half-dozen times and he NEVER comes up short. Like Milton, Caetano, Boca Livre, and Gal Costa, he exudes a vibe and an "aura" which must be experienced to be fully understood. Gosh, I love this shewt! I have included the aforementioned "Guarde nos Olhos" for your enjoyment...Need I add "highly recommended?"

Monday, March 12, 2012

Robert Carlos e Caetano Veloso e a musica de Tom Jobim DVD Sony Music

Although I once again betray my middle-aged tastes, this DVD is as beautiful as the most rare gem. Caetano and Roberto display a love and respect for both the music of the master, Tom Jobim, and one another. Caetano proves once again that he is not only among the world's great singer/songwriters but also provides profound interpretations of the compositions of other great bossa nova, samba and MPB artists! Arrangements are by the great Jaques Morelenbaum who conducts and blesses the cello. Jaques resume includes stints as musical director for Tom Jobim, Gal Costa and Caetano. I have had the honor of seeing him perform and conduct his arrangements with the likes of Gal at Carnegie Hall and Caetano at Town Hall. His arrangements are the equal of Duke Ellington's best work! This is some SOPHISTICATED shewt! Caetano is stupendous in his "solo" efforts, belying the fact that he is no longer young. The duets, the performance of Roberto Carlos (actually MORE famous than the footballer of the same name!), the top-notch musicians, the sound quality and multi-media effects are all first rate. WAVE is particularly awesome and is included for your bossa groove......The tunes run the gamut of Tom's best work, Chega de Saudade, Ligia, Corcovado, Aguas de Marco, Ela e' Carioca,........ all masterfully performed by two of Brasil's greatest pop artists. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
O Melhor das Aquarelas - DVD
Emilio Santiago

Emilio's live concert DVD features a crack band, marvelous arrangements and the world's greatest music sung by arguably the the foremost male sambista inhabiting planet earth. Many of the songs are culled from his "Aquarela do Brasil" series of CDs which contain many of Brasil's greatest pop songs, frequently in the form of beautiful medleys. It could not be more highly recommended. If one admires sophisticated samba, bossa nova, gorgeous ballads and a voice for which to die, this DVD will provide endless hours of enjoyment! The sample should provide a taste of this awesome release. Difficult to find, but well worth the effort!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Essential releases by Caetano Veloso - Highly subjective, incomplete and in no particular order!

Cores e Nomes
Circulado Ao Vivo
Prenda Minha
Tropicalia 2 (com o Gilberto Gil)
Cinema Transcendental
Outras Palavras

Yikes, just buy 'em all! Caetano is truly God's own muse! ...and in his beauty, he probably wouldn't mind "musa" - The mulatto from Bahia can't possibly imagine the musical pleasure which he has provided this gringo!!!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Ze Renato will be releasing a new album entitled "Breves Minutos" - can't wait to obtain a copy for enjoyment and review! for "breve" samples! Enjoy!!!