Ever since he won the VISA MPB Award in 1988, André Mehmari has been a constant presence in Brazilian music. His solo and collaborative projects have been nothing short of extraordinary. With each new release, he continues to set the bar higher for himself and for others. By now, you should have heard some of his previous works featured here: Piano & Voz, Continuous Friendship and …De Árvores e Valsas. His stellar discography has just added another fascinating album, Miramari, a duo release with Italian clarinetist Gabriele Mirabassi.
Born in Perugia (Italy, 1967), Mirabassi studied both modern classical music and jazz improvisation and graduated from the Morlacchi Conservatory in 1986. He is no stranger to Brazilian music and has played and recorded with Sergio Assad (Velho Retrato, 1999), delved into Brazilian choro with 1 – 0 (Uno a Zero) in 2001, and joined Guinga inGraffiando Vento in 2004. This new partnership with André Mehmari is a blessing and perfect match — again! As with other previous duo albums Mehmari has done, his piano is superb. It doesn’t matter whether he’s performing with voice (as in Piano & Voz) or mandolin (as in Continuous Friendship), Mehmari possesses the gift to excel in his endeavors.
Produced by André and Gabriele, Miramari (don’t you love the play with their names?!) also brings in talented drummer Ricardo Mosca and bassist Zé Alexandre Carvalho. With 17 original pieces written by both artists,Miramari is introduced in its liner notes by none other than Guinga. If you have not yet started playing the album, those short notes alone set the mood for the music you are about to hear.
Miramari is a homage to the oceans that had its origins when André visited Gabriele in Perugia. After that first visit that planted the seed for Miramari, André returned to Italy to visit other places. From that second visit, he wrote some music about the places he visited, and they are included here: “Um Dia em Assis,” which opens the album; the beautiful “Perugia Notturna” and “Quando em Gubbio.”
No ar que um pinça
o outro pedala
Um é mio bambino
o outro é meu guri.
Mira unge o solo brasileiro com óleo da Umbria
Mari adoça o mediterrâneo com apátrida garoa
From the deep blue sails on the cover and booklet photographs (by André Mehmari) to the soft, vibrant and mellifluous music, the artists beautifully express their ocean views from worlds apart united by their affinity and music from the heart. Gabriele says that his and André’s origins are “defined by their respective seas.” It’s an intriguing statement, especially when one considers the fact that Gabriele comes from a city without a sea. However, as he explains it, that same lack of a sea is a point of creation. He says that the “sea educates the senses,” and that is crystal clear in the music we enjoy in Miramari. Mirabassi’s “Chove na Minha Valsa,” “Disarmati” and “Subindo a Cantareira” exemplify that creativity. Using Gabriele’s own words, this album is “to see… to listen to… to feel.” There is plenty of beautiful music to experience in Miramari. See the artists performing “Que Falta Faz Tua Ternura.”
You can learn more about the artists and music by going to their web sites: André Mehmari and Gabriele Mirabassi.
André Mehmari & Gabriele Mirabassi
Estúdio Monteverdi EM 003 (2009)
All tracks by André Mehmari, except where noted.
- Um Dia em Assis
- Brilha o Carnaval (André Mehmari – Luiz Tatit)
- Que Falta Faz Tua Ternura
- Choro da Contínua Amizade
- Canção Desnecessária (Guinga – Mauro Aguiar)
- Chove na Minha Valsa (Gabriele Mirabassi)
- Perugia Notturna
- Disarmati (Gabriele Mirabassi)
- Mirabilis Mirabassi
- Rasgando Seda (Guinga – Simone Guimarães)
- Subindo a Cantareira (Gabriele Mirabassi)
- Uma Valsa em Forma de Árvore
- Um Anjo Nasce
- O Espelho
- Quando em Gubbio
- Rondoletto Per I Bambini