Dec 24 2005

Guilherme Vergueiro & Carlos dos Santos: Espiritu

An Artistic Gift


EspirituIf I were asked to define Espiritu in only one word, majestic would be my appraisal.  Brazilian pianist Guilherme Vergueiro teams up with seven-string guitarist Carlos dos Santos to release this timeless album.  From the opening track, a ten-minute glorious rendition of K-Ximbinho’s “Ternura,” the union of piano and guitar is perfect in every way.  Notes flow smoothly as if coming from a single celestial instrument.  The ethereal feeling of this music is what every musician longs to accomplish when playing classic works by Pixinguinha, Ary Barroso, Lupiscínio Rodrigues and Nelson Cavaquinho.  Sometimes Vergueiro and Santos are purely simple in their renditions, as with Pixinguinha’s “Ingênuo.”  At other times, however, these two virtuosi astound your senses with melodic jewels.  Rodrigues’ “Se Acaso Você Chegasse” quietly moves from its unison introduction to a whirlwind performance of guitar excellence.  Piano and guitar seem to play different melodies without ever being dissonant or far from the original music.  The album showcases six original pieces by Vergueiro and one by Santos amidst the other classics.  For the listener, however, there is absolutely no rough transition from track to track.  As if by magic, all you experience is superb musicianship by two consummate artists whose sole intent seems to be to lift your spirits with their magnificent artistic gift.

You can read more about the artists and listen to songs here.



Guilherme Vergueiro & Carlos dos Santos 
Naim CD041 (1999)
Total time: 64’49”


  1. Ternura (K’Ximbinho)
  2. Ingênuo (Pixinguinha)
  3. Se Acaso Você Chegasse ( Lupiscínio Rodrigues)
  4. Simply Simple (Guilherme Vergueiro)
  5. Despedida (Guilherme Vergueiro)
  6. Ri Melhor (Guilherme Vergueiro)
  7. Aquarela do Brasil (Guilherme Vergueiro)
  8. Homenagem à Velha Guarda (Sivuca)
  9. Subindo o Morro (Guilherme Vergueiro)
  10. A Flor e o Espinho (Nelson Cavaquinho)
  11. A Alegria Voltou ((Guilherme Vergueiro)
  12. Thinking of You (Carlos dos Santos)
  13. Sou Só (Guilherme Vergueiro)

A modified version of this review appeared in the January/February 2001 issue of JazzTimes.