Mar 16 2004

Various Artists: comPasso Samba & Choro

Good Samba & Choro Samplers


One of the most frequent questions I hear when people are trying to buy their first Brazilian CD is what album I would recommend for someone not yet very familiar with Brazilian music. Choosing one album to best represent the wide range of Brazilian musical styles is a difficult choice simply because Brazilian music is so diverse. So, here is a project created by Olivia Hime that fits the bill just right. The series comPasso – Samba & Choro, currently with seven volumes out, might be just what one needs as an introduction to Brazilian music. What makes the series even more appealing is the fact that the CDs are sold separately.

Even if you are already a Brazilian music lover, you will still enjoy the music presented here because the performers are some of the best in the Brazilian music scene. The albums were all recorded live at the Imperial Palace in Rio de Janeiro and present from 13 to 15 tracks each. The music itself covers some of the more traditional composers, such as Pixinguinha, Waldir Azevedo and Noel Rosa, to the current elite of new giants, such as Guinga, Luciana Rabello and Cristóvão Bastos, just to name a few. Instead of the usual compilations you find in stores, this series is carefully planned and presented. Each artist performs 2 or 3 songs in a row. So, you can get a very good feel as to what the artist’s own album sounds like. What a great way to discover a new artist or someone you would not normally think about buying his/her CD. It’s an excellent package complete with lyrics (in most albums) and performers in the liner notes. Now, are you ready for the performers’ names and track listings?


1º comPasso Samba & Choro1º comPasso Samba & Choro

The harmonious Quarteto Maogani (acoustic guitars) dazzle in a classic repertoire. In a very smooth transition, Henrique Cazes and Cristina Buarque then register three sambas by one of Brazil’s greatest songwriters, Noel Rosa. In their last number, Cazes narrates a piece of history about “Nunca… Jamais.” Continuing the classic repertoire, Zé da Velha (trombone) and Silvério Pontes (trumpet) play traditional maxixes. That is a good introduction to one of today’s most daring and successful choro groups: Rabo de Lagartixa. Just sit back and be amazed at their performance of the jaw-breaking “Quebra-Queixo.” Finally, closing this album, one of Brazil’s most respected samba writers present three gems, including one by Zé Keti.


Quarteto Maogani:
Ainda Me Recordo (Pixinguinha)
Tempos Idos (Barrozo Neto)
Batida Diferente (Durval Ferreira)

Cristina Buarque & Henrique Cazes:
De Qualquer Maneira (Noel Rosa – Ary Barroso)
Meu Barracão (Noel Rosa)
Nunca… Jamais (Noel Rosa)

Zé da Velha & Silvério Pontes:
Matuto (Ernesto Nazareth)
Escurinho (Geraldo Pereira)
Gavião Calçudo (Pixinguinha)

Rabo de Lagartixa:
Alegre Menina (Dori Caymmi)
Arrasta-Pé (Waldir Azevedo)
Quebra-Queixo (Caio Cézar)

Élton Medeiros:
A Maioria Sem Nenhum (Élton Medeiros – Mauro Duarte)
Nêga Dina (Zé Keti)
Ame (Élton Medeiros – Paulinho da Viola)


2º comPasso Samba & Choro

2º comPasso Samba & Choro

Opening the second album, Paulo Sérgio Santos (clarinet) duels with guitar master Guinga in three of Guinga’s modern classic guitar pieces. Guinga himself sings “Catavento e Girasol.” Cavaquinho player Luciana Rabello performs three great choros, including her beautiful evocative “Velhos Chorões,” a tribute to traditional choro players. In these tracks, she’s accompanied by Pedro Amorim (mandolin), Maurício Carrilho (7-string acoustic guitar) and Celsinho Silva and Jorginho do Pandeiro (pandeiro). Sax player Edgar Duvivier enters with his smooth sax solos showing his versatility in choros and sambas. It is then choro time with guitar virtuoso Maurício Carrilho. Finally, one of the Buarque members, Miúcha, closes the album with Ary Barroso, Chico Buarque and Baden Powell songs (credited incorrectly in the liner notes).


Canibale (Guinga)
Catavento e Girasol (Guinga)
Di-Menor (Guinga)

Luciana Rabello:
Beliscando (Paulinho da Viola)
Velhos Chorões (Luciana Rabello)
Sensível (Pixinguinha)

Edgar Duvivier:
Queixa Antiga (Luciana Rabello – Paulo César Pinheiro – Cristóvão Bastos)
Chorinho de Gafieira (Astor Silva)
Samba na Neve (Edgar Duvivier)

Maurício Carrilho:
Turbante do Joel (Maurício Carrilho)
Mestre Jorginho do Pandeiro (Luciana Rabello)
Serenata Pro Pilger (Maurício Carrilho)

Na Batucada da Vida (Ary Barroso)
Todo Sentimento (Chico Buarque – Cristóvão Bastos)
Deixa/Tem Dó (Baden Powell – Vinícius de Moraes)


3º comPasso Samba & Choro3º comPasso Samba & Choro

3º comPasso opens again with Paulo Sérgio Santos (clarinet) accompanying Caio Márcio in two Garoto pieces. The same mood continues with Francis Hime and his captivating voice and arrangements,, including his famous “Meu Caro Amigo,” with lyrics by Chico Buarque. Two classic choro composers, Jacob do Bandolim and Pixinguinha, are featured in Trio Madeira Brasil’s numbers. Excellent choice and performance. Songstress Mariana Leporace and pianist Sheila Zagury feature two songs by Edu Lobo and Chico Buarque, previously featured in their São Bonitas as Canções. New guitar kid on the block, Yamandú Costa shows why there is so much talk about his performances. Zé Paulo Becker duets with Costa in Jobim’s “Chovendo na Roseira.” Vocal group Garganta Profunda amazes listeners with numbers from the golden era (“Lata d’Água”) and today (“Desde que o Samba É Samba”). If you don’t know about Garganta Profunda, they are like the Manhattan Transfer of Brazil.


Caio Márcio:
Desvairada (Garoto)
Lamentos do Morro (Garoto)

Francis Hime:
Choro Rasgado (Francis Hime – Olivia Hime)
Meu Caro Amigo (Francis Hime – Chico Buarque)
Tereza Sabe Sambar (Francis Hime – Vinícius de Moraes)

Trio Madeira Brasil:
Aguenta Seu Fugêncio (Jacob do Bandolim)
1 x 0 (Pixinguinha)

Marianna Leporace & Sheila Zagury:
Nêgo Maluco (Edu Lobo – Chico Buarque)
Beatriz (Edu Lobo – Chico Buarque)

Yamandú Costa:
Chovendo na Roseira (Tom Jobim) – w/ Zé Paulo Becker

Garganta Profunda:
Lata d’Água (Gigante – Candeias Jota Jr.)
O Pato (Toquinho – Vinícius de Moraes – Paulo Soledade)
Desde que o Samba É Samba (Caetano Veloso)


4º comPasso Samba & Choro4º comPasso Samba & Choro

Son of legendary Osmar Macedo (creator of the Trio Elétrico), Armandinho goes back to Brazilian roots with choros by the great performers Jacob do Bandolim and Ernesto Nazareth. Featuring songs from her Chiquinha Gonzaga album, Serenata de uma Mulher, Olivia Hime picks two wonderful numbers to exemplify the importance of Gonzaga as one of the foremost songwriters in Brazil. Better known for his soundtrack works, João Nabuco here presents original songs. After that, Joyce picks a trilogy of sambas by Noel Rosa, Assis Valente and Geraldo Pereira. Pianist and composer GIlson Peranzzetta (one of Ivan Lins’s frequent partners) here concentrates on his jazz skills with two knock-out numbers, including his homage to Hermeto Pascoal in “Bruxo.” The premier neo-choro group Nó em Pingo D’Água shows why they are the kings in today’s choro.


Assanhado (Jacob do Bandolim)
Noites Cariocas (Jacob do Bandolim)
Apanhei-te Cavaquinho (Ernesto Nazareth – Ubaldo)

Olivia Hime:
Itararé (Chiquinha Gonzaga – Hermínio Bello de Carvalho)
Não se Impressione (Chiquinha Gonzaga – Olivia Hime)

João Nabuco:
Minas Geraes (João Nabuco)
Rosa dos Ventos (João Nabuco)

Palpite Infeliz (Noel Rosa)
Recenseamento (Assis Valente)
Falsa Baiana (Geraldo Pereira)

Gilson Peranzzetta:
Choro Sim, Porque Não! (Gilson Peranzzetta)
Bruxo (Gilson Peranzzetta)

Nó em Pingo D’Água:
Por Debaixo do Pano (Rodrigo Lessa – Eduardo Neves)
Choro dos Anjos (Mário Sève)


5º comPasso Samba & Choro5º comPasso Samba & Choro

Featured in previous comPasso albums, Zé Paulo Becker (a member of the Trio Madeira Brasil) is now a major soloist in this fifth edition of the series. In addition to two original numbers, he also performs the classic “Feitiço da Vila.” One of the major names in the golden era of Brazilian radio performers, Zezé Gonzaga finally released her first solo album at age 76! The album Sou Apenas uma Senhora que Ainda Canta was produced by Hermínio Bello de Carvalho and featured songs by Ary Barroso, Carlos Lyra and others. Here you can hear her touching performances of three classics. Duofel (Luiz Bueno and Fernando Melo) uses their guitar skills to showcase Brazil’s most widely known song, Ary Barroso’s “Aquarela do Brasil.” Though performed worldwide by different artists, in this rendition the song sounds totally new. Son of Ruy Faria (from male quartet MPB-4) and Cynara (from female quartet Quarteto em Cy), Chico Faria has music in his blood. Another similar famous relative is connected to the next performer, Marcelo Vianna. His grandfather was none other than Pixinguinha. Of course the songs here are by Pixinguinha and two of his collaborators, Cícero de Almeida and Vinícius de Moraes.


Zé Paulo Becker:
Sob o Redentor (Zé Paulo Becker)
Galope em São Domingos (Zé Paulo Becker)
Feitiço da Vila (Vadico – Noel Rosa)

Zezé Gonzaga:
Inquietação (Ary Barroso)
Linda Flor (Luiz Peixoto – Marques Porto – Henrique Vogeler – Cândido Costa)
Primavera (Carlos Lyra – Vinícius de Moraes)

Aquarela do Brasil (Ary Barroso)
Procissão (Gilberto Gil)

Chico Faria:
Desde que o Samba É Samba (Caetano Veloso)
Nova Ilusão (Claudionor Cruz – Pedro Caetano)
Pecado Capital (Paulinho da Viola)

Marcelo Vianna:
Mundo Melhor (Pixinguinha – Vinícius de Moraes)
Samba de Fato (Pixinguinha – Cícero de Almeida)
Gavião Calçudo (Pixinguinha – Cícero de Almeida)


6º comPasso Samba & Choro6º comPasso Samba & Choro

In this latest issue of comPasso, Biscoito Fino introduced two new artists — Leila Maria and Dino Rangel — as bookends to 4 top performers and songwriters: Clara Sandroni, Marcos Sacramento, Simone Guimarães and Sérgio Santos. Both Maria and Rangel chose numbers that are part of the traditional Brazilian songbook. They performed songs by Monsueto, Garoto and Guinga. So, this all fits the great theme carried forth by Clara Sandroni and Marcos Sacramento in their excellent tribute to Baden Powell, Saravá, Baden Powell! With Simone Guimarães next, accompanied by guitarist Juarez Moreira, we then have great examples of the contemporary Brazilian music. In addition to performing a song from her Casa de Oceano and another from Virada pra Lua, Guimarães offers one brand new song, “Rosa Querida.” The other songwriter and performer featured in 6º comPasso is the impeccable Sérgio Santos. His smooth vocals and elaborate songs are entrancing and magical. Here he features one track from his 1995 Aboio album followed by two tracks from the magnificent 2001 Áfrico, Quando o Brasil Resolveu Cantar, a must-have album.


Leila Maria:
Marambaia (Rubens Campos – Henricão)
Me Deixa em Paz (Monsueto Menezes – Ayrton Amorim)

Clara Sandroni & Marcos Sacramento:
Canto da Pedra Preta (Baden Powell – Vinícius de Moraes)
É de Lei (Baden Powell – Paulo César Pinheiro)
Lapinha (Baden Powell – Paulo César Pinheiro)

Simone Guimarães:
Zomba (Kiko Continentino – Bernardo Lobo – Milton Nascimento)
Imensidade (Simone Guimarães)
Rosa Querida (Simone Guimarães)

Sérgio Santos:
Aboio (Sérgio Santos – Paulo César Pinheiro)
Nossa Cor (Sérgio Santos)
Quitanda das Iaôs (Sérgio Santos – Paulo César Pinheiro)

Dino Rangel:
Lamentos do Morro (Garoto)
Choro pro Zé (Guinga – Aldir Blanc)


7º comPasso Samba & Choro7º comPasso Samba & Choro


Billy Blanco:
Samba Triste (Baden Powell/Billy Blanco)
Piston de Gafieira (Billy Blanco)

Tira Poeira:
Delicado (Waldir Azevedo)
Receita de Samba (Jacob Do Bandolim)
Santa Morena (Jacob Do Bandolim)

Mas Que Nada (Jorge Ben Jor)
De Frente Pro Crime (João Bosco/Aldir Blanc)

Marco Pereira:
Tempo de Futebol (Marco Pereira)
Mulher Rendeira (Zé Do Norte)
Modinha/Luiza (Tom Jobim/Vinicius De Moraes)/(Tom Jobim)

Moacyr Luz:
Cordas De Aço (Cartola)
Pra Que Pedir Perdão (Moacyr Luz/Aldir Blanc)

Daniela Spielmann:
Tico-Tico No Fubá (Zequinha De Abreu)
Raxim (Daniela Spielmann)


If your musical taste is like mine, I can safely say one thing: if you buy one of these albums, you’ll come back for the others. They are all top notch! This comPasso series is a great idea of Biscoito Fino. Not only does it showcase established artists and new upcoming names, but it also serves to highlight what is best in Brazilian music from the yesterday and today.