Classic Tania Maria!
Dynamic, innovative, energetic, soulful — these are some terms often associated with the incomparable Brazilian talent of Tania Maria. Probably better known outside of her homeland, Maria is indeed a very strong and creative force. Her enthusiasm can at times, though, lead her to ramble on some of her renditions. However, in this release she is most definitely more controlled. Her infusion in some traditional Brazilian music is absolutely bewildering. She is one of the few artists capable of performing a well-known tune and transform it into something totally new and, at the same time, still make it entirely appealing. That is precisely the case of Jobim and Mendonça’s “One Note Samba.” Unlike its usual fast tempo, here it becomes the most intimate, emotive ballad. The end result is spellbinding. Maria’s arrangements are unique, as always. Who else could take the French song “Petite Fleur,” by Bechet, give it Portuguese lyrics, and make it an infectious samba? Cacao’s clarinet solo maintains the song’s French flavor while Carneiro, Cavani, and Huchard’s percussion and drums deliver the Brazilian rhythm perfectly. In yet another magnificent number, the classic “Sebastiana,” made famous by Jackson do Pandeiro, Maria is super charged with the traditional Brazilian xaxado. From samba to funk to Brazilian roots, Viva Brazil is never short of surprises. It is classic Tania Maria.
You can read more about this artist and listen to songs in her website.
Concord Picante CCD-4873-2 (2000)
Total time: 52’48”
- Florzinha (Petite Fleur) (Sidney Bechet – Tania Maria Correa Reis)
- Tá Tudo Certo (Tania Maria Correa Reis) / Mas Que Nada (Jorge Ben Jor)
- Sebastiana (Rosil Cavalcanti)
- Encanto Meu (Tania Maria Correa Reis)
- Vem Pra Roda (Tania Maria Correa Reis)
- It’s Only Love (Tania Maria Correa Reis – Leslie Carter)
- One Note Samba (Antonio Carlos Jobim – Newton Mendonça)
- Não Se Avexe Não (Francisco Anysio – Haydee Paula)
- Amei Demais (Tania Maria Correa Reis)
- Sangria (Tania Maria Correa Reis)
- Conceição (Jair Amorim – Dunga)
A modified version of this review appeared in the January/February 2001 issue of JazzTimes.