Oct 31 2015

Celso Fonseca: Like Nice

The Musical Heritage of João Gilberto

Like NiceCelso Fonseca’s new album Like Nice has written “bossa nova” all over it. It’s a pure dedication to the musical heritage of João Gilberto. With the legendary composer/ performer in mind, Celso further perfected his technique of the João Gilberto bossa chords on the acoustic guitar. His voice was already in perfect shape, as always, so the recording of Like Nice could start!

Celso Fonseca (Rio de Janeiro, 1956) this time chose to record his own compositions, except for one: “Stormy” (1969) by J.R. Cobb and Buddy Buie, a beautiful ballad that painlessly could be transformed into bossa nova, especially with Marcos Valle behind his loyal Fender Rhodes piano! The other songs are all penned by Celso, some with lyrics by his long-time musical partner Ronaldo Bastos. The track list also houses two instrumentals that Celso wrote as film scores, but were never used.

The music was recorded in an intimate way: Celso had his voice and acoustic guitar recorded together live in the studio, no overdubs or whatsoever. It graces the music with an honest and pure bossa nova feeling. Eduardo Souto Neto provided some string arrangements and Jessé Sadoc took care of the horn arrangements. They, on their turn, give the CD a certain nostalgic touch, like the good old strings and vocal albums of the jazzy 1950s and 60s. Besides Marcos Valle we also hear Jorjão Barreto on keyboards, Celso FonsecaFlávio Santos on drums and Júnior Moraes and Robertinho Silva on percussion. On the instrumental “Rio 56” Alexandre Cavallo is on the acoustic bass. A special moment comes when Rildo Hora (1939) makes a guest appearance on “Canção Que Vem.” He adds his characteristic harmonica skills and makes the song extra special. Also extra special is that, not only on “Canção Que Vem.” Celso for the first time also takes care of the bass playing on this album. With vocals in both Portuguese and English, Like Nice seems ready to attain international success. The album certainly deserves so, because it’s a wonderful representative of one of Brazil’s most cherished prides: Bossa Nova!

Celso Fonseca launched a special website for the album.




Celso Fonseca
Like Nice
Universal Music 060254732677 (2015)
Time: 44’55”

Tracks (all compositions by Celso Fonseca, except where noted)

  1. Like Nice (Celso Fonseca – Ronaldo Bastos)
  2. O Que Vai Sobrar
  3. Stormy (J. R. Cobb – Buddy Buie) – w/ Marcos Valle
  4. Por Que Era Você
  5. Road to Paradise (Celso Fonseca – Ronaldo Bastos)
  6. Onda Infinita do Amor (Celso Fonseca – Ronaldo Bastos)
  7. I Could Have Danced
  8. Rio 56 (instrumental)
  9. Canção Que Vem (Celso Fonseca – Ronaldo Bastos) – w/ Rildo Hora
  10. Meu Silêncio
  11. Céu
  12. January in the Tropics
  13. Zum Zum (instrumental)