Four years after her first Biscoito Fino release (Casa de Oceano), Simone Guimarães returns with Flor de Pão. The album is full of surprises, including a rich roster of special guests and Simone’s vocal diversity with smooth and visceral renditions. Her presence as a composer is definitely stronger here with five of the tracks in the album carrying her signature.
Arrangements are as diverse as the music presented. Nearly every track features a different arranger, a feat that enriches this solid release. Special guests include Toninho Horta, Dori Caymmi, Milton Nascimento, Guinga, Lula Galvão, Leila Pinheiro, Francis Hime, Renato Braz, Marcus Tardelli as well as an array of other familiar Brazilian instrumentalists.
The smooth opener with Toninho Horta, “Flor de Pão,” is all Minas Gerais in Antônio Carlos Bigonha’s well structured arrangement. Simone’s voice never sounded smoother than in this duet. She does a remarkable job in blending her voice with Toninho’s and his guitar accompaniment. Simone’s verses are very romantic and highlight her interests in nature themes including the wind, water as well as fire and love. Also in a very similar arrangement, but this time written by Kiko Continentino, “Cem Anos para Amar” continues in the same vein. These two sambas are richly Brazilian and flavored with that Milton Nascimento Clube da Esquina musical trademark. For the next track, “Confissão,” Dori Caymmi did the arrangement and also sang in duet with Simone. In a lovely waltz arrangement, Bigonha’s piano accompaniment complements the excellent cello quintet in a most exquisite and captivating song. All lyrics in these three tracks were written by Simone and carry a heavy romantic theme. Changing gears, Simone then features Milton Nascimento in “Baião de Câmara.” The chemistry between these stars continues to shine as it did before in other Simone’s albums as well as in Milton’s own Pietá. Without losing a beat, Guinga and Lula Galvão join Simone for the fast-tempo and vocal challenge of “Jongo do Compadre.” This lively coco is pure Guinga music. It is hard to separate voice from the acoustic guitars in this vigorous duel of strengths. Clearly this is one of the best tracks of the album. Guinga and Lula Galvão return later on in the toada “Via-Crúcis,” and that time the soaring vocals by Renato Braz join Simone’s.
Another memorable track is “Minha Mangueira,” with Leila Pinheiro joining Simone in this ode to the great Brazilian legendary Samba School. Leila herself arranged and also played the CP70 keyboard in this nice slow samba. Jessé Sadoc’s subtle flugelhorn solo is an extra bonus. Another simple and yet ultra romantic arrangement was created for “Carta à Amiga Poeta,” with Francis Hime on piano.
Flor de Pão continues the solid tradition in quality that Simone Guimarães has established for herself. The support she receives from the stellar guest artists in this album is proof of her earned position in Brazilian music. To hear samples from this fine release, please visit Simone Guimarães at Biscoito Fino.
Flor de Pão
Biscoito Fino BF 640 (2007)
- Flor de Pão (Antônio Carlos Bigonha – Simone Guimarães) w/ Toninho Horta
- Cem Anos para Amar (Kiko Continentino – Simone Guimarães)
- Confissão (Antônio Carlos Bigonha – Simone Guimarães) w/ Dori Caymmi
- Baião de Câmara (Thomas Saboga – Thiago Amud) w/ Mílton Nascimento
- Jongo de Compadre (Guinga – Simone Guimarães) w/ Guinga & Lula Galvão
- Novo Amigo (Novelli – Ana de Holanda)
- Dois Personagens (Jorge Helder – Celso Viáfora)
- Minha Mangueira (Leila Pinheiro) w/ Leila Pinheiro
- Carta à Amiga Poeta (Francis Hime – Simone Guimarães) w/ Francis Hime
- Chorosos Versos Meus (Fernando Vilela – Poem by Bocage)
- Via Crucis (Guinga – Edu Kneip) w/ Renato Braz
- Ave Maria (Thiago Amud – Traditional text of Ave Maria) w/ Marcus Tardelli
- Enquanto (Isaac Cândido – Marcus Dias)