BRASIL '65 IS HERE!
been acclaimed by concert crowds in Rome and Tokyo, and have captured the praise
of discerning audiences at Shelly's Manne Hole in Hollywood, where Capitol executive
producer David Cavanaugh first heard them and arranged for these exciting studio
recording sessions. In Brazil their music has created a concert demand matched only
in the U.S. by several of the very top artists.
Brasil '65's sound is more illusive than its great appeal might suggest. It's a fresh,
contemporary sound that employs the new melodies and samba-like rhythms of Brazil's
finest young composers. In a very subtle way it's a jazz sound; and in a very definite
way it's a bright, happy, youthful sound. It is reminiscent of some of the best bossa
nova music heard in the U.S. in the past two years, and of the Carnival themes from
the film "Black Orpheus" Yet it's a sound that's lighter, fresher and happier than these.
Its haunting quality has an underlying optimism about it. Its infectious understated
rhythm seems to build a sort of momentum that moves listeners until they are caught in
its spirit. And what a wonderful spirit it is, this magical thing called Brasil '65!
Brasil '65's people are as interesting as its sound:
Wanda de Sah (VAN-da day SAH) is the young singer whose name is on everyone's
lips today in Brazil. She is literally the girl from Ipanema, a few miles from the famous
Copacabana beach in Rio. Until recently she has lived with her parents. Originally a
guitar teacher, Wanda began singing to her own accompaniments just to entertain her
friends. Today her admiring friends are numbered in the millions.
Sergio Mendes is the pianist and leader of the Trio. He is well-known in Brazil, not
only as one of the foremost jazz pianists, but as a talented composer and arranger. He
comes from Rio, where he, his wife and baby son have a beautiful home overlooking
the bay. His sidemen are bassist Sebastião Neto, formerly a player with João Gilberto's
famed group, and a drummer who goes by the name of Chico Batera, or, in Brazilian,
Rosinha de Valença (Ro-ZEEN-yah day VAH-LAYN-sah), like her friend Wanda, is
just out of her teens. And yet, she is possibly the finest woman guitarist in all the
world, and certainly one of the most popular musicians in Brazil. Her virtuosity that
you'll hear in this album becomes all the more spellbinding when one considers that
she is completely self-taught.
SO NICE (Samba de Verão). As timely as BRASIL '65, this is a brand new song by the
young Brazilian composer, Marcus Valle, with English lyrics by Norman Gimbel, sung
beautifully in English by Wanda.
FAVELA, by Antonio Carlos Jobim, begins with a bouncy bass motif followed by a
superimposed drum figure setting the stage for the piano which states the melody over
constantly shifting harmonies.
BERIMBAU. This word refers to an ancient stringed instrument from the state of Bahia
used for a ritual dance in which two men fought for the affections of a woman. What
Wanda sings (in Portuguese) is a song that has evolved, representing the actual chant
of the old ceremonial instrument.
TRISTEZA EM MIM. Literally "sadness is mine;' but musically, Rosinha's lively guitar
solo reveals a rather optimistic concept of sadness.
AQUARIUS. The derivation of this title is strictly extra-musical. The composer, João
Donate, dedicated the work to his wife, whose zodiac sign happens to be Aquarius.
ONE NOTE SAMBA is probably the best known tune in the album, written by one of the
best known exponents of bossa nova Antonio Carlos Jobim. The highly accented
melody affords Wanda an ideal outlet for her vocalizing.
SHE'S A CARIOCA. In Brazil the slang label for a native of Rio is "Carioca" With this
soothing bit of instrumental introspection, composer Jobim has captured the innermost
thoughts of a young man who is studying a young female Carioca. The graceful,
undulating lines of the music reveal enough thoughts to fill her diary.
MUITO A VONTADE. Another thought-provoking instrumentalwritten by João
Donatothis is a study in complacency, or, to translate the title loosely, to be at an
advantage over life. There is a monosyllable in our current vernacular that explains this
relaxed frame of mind: "cool"
LET ME (Deixa). Wanda's treatment turns a plaintive plea into a haunting ballad. The
song is Baden Powell's; Norman Gimbel added the English lyrics.
CONSOLAÇÃO. Music for the purpose of consoling becomes a showcase for the
unamplified magic of Rosinha's guitar, as she shows equal skill at single string or
REZA. Wanda climaxes BRASIL '65 with an African chanting prayer sung in
Portuguese. Particularly impressive is the manner in which she softens the hypnotic
repetitions of the melody to fit into a typical Latin framework.