Apr 25 2004

Iara Figueiredo: Aluado

A Promising Vocalist


AluadoDuring the first half of the 90’s, when Iara Silveira Figueiredo (1967, Rio de Janeiro) lived in the USA, she studied at the Boston School of Fashion Design as well as at the Musicians Institute in Hollywood, California. On both fields she gained the knowledge she gratefully uses since returning to Brazil. Her first album, Pintura Íntima (1998) was presented with success in Rio’s Mistura Fina in 1999. The song “Teu Sonho Não Acabou,” from that album, was used as theme of the popular series “Meu Bem-Querer” on Globo Television. As daughter of well known parents, the renowned journalist Sérgio Figueiredo and his wife Yolanda, one of Rio’s socialites, the doors to success might have been a bit easier to open. But it is of course Iara’s talent as a singer that makes it all possible.

Along with a collection of jewels (“O Caminho das Esmeraldas”), Iara’s second cd, Aluado, hit the scene in 2002. It’s a double album with one cd (D’Javu) dedicated to remixes of songs from the other cd (Movimento). The remixes are done by specialists like DJ Dolores, DJ Dudu Garcia and Ian Duarte, among others. My interest goes to cd number one, though. Almost all compositions are by guitarist, bassist, dj and composer Geisan Varne, known from the lounge band BPM (Bits Per Minute) that he co-founded with André Bourgeois. It’s clear that electronics and samplers play an important role on the cd. However, it’s not overdone. There’s plenty of room for a marvelous horn section (Dum Dum, trumpet, flugelhorn and Bira Rodrigues, trombone) and for the bass and acoustic guitar played by Geisan Varne. Of course the presence of Marcos Suzano on percussion is always a pleasure. The opener “Candeeiro” is a catchy and danceable composition, with the horns setting the atmosphere. The trombone and trumpet combination plays an important part throughout this cd. The flugelhorn solo (Dum Dum) on “Água Morna” is delightful, but the attention on this track goes to the electric guitar from Vernon Reid (Living Colour). His surprising participation gives the gentle song an aggressive undertone, specially with his solo during the last part. The title song features percussionist Marcos Suzano, performing a lazy rhythm with thoughtful accents by pianist Leo Fernandes and nice backing vocals by Kacau Gomes. One of the album’s highlights is “Anônimos,” with a relaxed but funky guitar riff by Luís Meira and Marcos Suzano’s trademark percussion style. The trading between trombone and flugelhorn solo’s during the second half of the song is wonderful! “Brasil Favela” is a nice surprise because of its very strange character. It’s a composition by Varne and Iara on which Varne uses samplers from a show Iara performed in Leblon, Rio. A strong bass line and steady drums follow an odd vocal choir; the voice of Iara fits perfectly. The cd closes with Jobim’s “Águas de Março.” A strange song to close this very contemporary album with. But it is one of the last recordings of Raphael Rabello, the legendary guitarist who passed away in April 1995. It is here, accompanied only by guitar, that Iara delivers her best vocal performance on this album. Where on the other tracks on this cd, Iara’s vocals are a bit limited by borders, set by the tight instrumentation, it is here that she’s able to fully demonstrate her talent. Here and on “Ouro Refinado,” where Ricardo Leão is accompanying Iara’s voice on the acoustic piano, along with the fretless bass and modest acoustic guitar by Geisan Varne. A beautiful song.

This very good album leaves you with the impression that Iara Figueiredo is capable to much more. I, for one, would have been more pleased with a additional cd full of small acoustic setting songs, rather than with the remixes… A promising vocalist.



Iara Figueiredo
MCD World Music MCD 146 (2002)
Time: 48’24” and 34’11”


CD 1: Movimento


  1. Candeeiro (Geisan Varne)
  2. Água Morna (Geisan Varne)
  3. Aluado (Geisan Varne – Renato Queiroz)
  4. D’Javu (Geisan Varne)
  5. Ouro Refinado (Geisan Varne – João Nabuco)
  6. Só Você (Edmon Costa)
  7. Diluído (Geisan Varne)
  8. Anônimos (Geisan Varne)
  9. Fim de Tarde (Iara Figueiredo – Geisan Varne)
  10. Brasil Favela (Iara Figueiredo – Geisan Varne)
  11. Águas de Março (Antônio Carlos Jobim)

CD 2: D’Javu

  1. Candeeiro (remix by D’jpm)
  2. D’Javu (remix by GV and Marcelinho da Lua)
  3. Diluído (remix by D’jpm)
  4. Aluado (remix by João Paulo Mendonça)
  5. Fim de Tarde (remix by Ian Duarte)
  6. D’Javu (remix by DJ Dolores)