A Creative Avenue
In the late 1990’s in Brazil, the ongoing marketing strategy focused on simple melodies, catchy lyrics and sparsely dressed performers. Selling CDs is what counts to those producers and marketing moguls. The other side of this coin is what you will find in Ataualba Meirelles’s most recent production, Projeto 1.000 Zic Buk 2. This is a multi-performer collection of twenty songs covering everything from baião, blues, jazz, to Brazilian rock. The title of the album is a play on Portuguese and English words. Think of it as really Project Music Book 2. Music appears in the title as the combination of 1.000 (a thousand in Portuguese, or “mil,” where the “L” is pronounced as “U”).
In Meirelles’s own words, this project is the avenue for those musicians interested in making music for the love of music. They compose without regard to commercialism. Meirelles gives these talented musicians the means to present their work and not waste their talents. It would be unrealistic to expect perfection in such an eclectic mixture of rhythms and styles, vocal and instrumental melodies. Nevertheless, the vitality these musicians display is admirable. It will be interesting to revisit them years down the road and check the names that went on to produce a successful career.
The first track, “Uma Vida Assim com Você,” is a soulful composition by Nil Freitas interpreted by Hulda Lago. Her jazz and gospel influences are clearly more pronounced in her vocalise towards the end of the tune. With a stronger instrumental jazz approach, Marlon Eça’s “Archijazz” has an interesting story associated with it. Originally created in the digital domain, this recording was done with musicians instead of the digital format. The warmth brought forth in Geová Nascimento’s tenor sax solos seems to be more than any justification one would ever need for the real human touch in music. As for Amadeu Alves’s “Baião Unido,” the trip back to authentic Brazilian northeastern music is evidenced beyond the obvious title of the song. João Liberato’s flute solos are reminiscent of folkloric fife bands still present in the northeast hinterland.
Overall, what impressed me the most about Projeto 1.000 Zic Buk 2 was the consistent quality of the instrumental numbers over the vocal pieces. As you listen to each track, you cannot help but wonder what it would be like to hear more music by these dedicated musicians. Brazilian instrumental music is well represented by Cesar Camargo Mariano, Carlos Malta, Azymuth, Hermeto Pascoal and many others. Projeto 1.000 Zic Buk 2 now adds more names to that tradition.
Copies of this release are available directly from Virtual Studio. Please contact Ataualba Meirelles for information.
Projeto 1.000 Zic Buk 2
Virtual Studio MB299 (1999)
- Uma Vida Assim com Você (Nil Freitas) – Hulda Lago & Nil Freitas
- Archijazz (Marlon Eça) – Marlon Eça
- Trash (Nana Meirelles) – Nana Meirelles
- Baião Unido (Amadeu Alves) – Amadeu Alves
- Pelo Mundo Afora (Lapa – André Olilveira) – Lapa
- Coração Nagô (Lapa – André Oliveira) – Lapa
- Ciranda dos Sonhos (Mariana Caribé – Patrícia Hita) – Barra Manteiga
- De Como as Fadinhas Pongam no Vento (Ricardo Bordini) – Ricardo Bordini
- Ballet (Nil Freitas – Carlos Brother) – Nil Freitas & Carlos Brother
- Tenho Algo a Dizer (Paulo Zamoura – Guto Lilas) – DaCappo
- Cristal – Axé Merda (Lela Badaró – Emmanuel Walter) – Lela Badaró
- Araribóia (Márcio Mello) – Lela Badaró
- N’Inaã (Sérgio Souto) – Sérgio Souto
- Emoção na Colina (Cau Marinho – Walfer) – Cau Marinho
- Uns Versos (Luciano Bahia) – Tati Lima
- Se Toque (Pedrinho Rêgo – Orlando Pinho – Chris Mazekela) – Banda Jahde
- A Virada (Adapted from folklore by Marcelo Ganem) – Marcelo Ganem
- Baião de 3 (André Becker) – Bonde Xadrez)
- Gandhi (Yonsen Maia) – Yonsen Maia
- Prelúdio Nº1 para Violão (Hélio Bacelar) – Hélio Bacelar)
A modified version of this review first appeared in Luna Kafé, April 1999.