Nov 09 2010

Tom Jobim: My Soul Sings

The Memory of Brazil


My Soul Sings

There never has been any doubt about it: The performer Antônio Carlos Jobim definitely preferred to sing his own songs. It was only on rare occasions that this icon of Brazilian music lent his voice to the work of other composers. This underlines the exceptional significance of Minha Alma Canta (My Soul Sings). The album treats us with a compilation of songs from various composers that Tom Jobim performed for a series of attractive songbooks produced by the late Almir Chediak.

Chediak’s songbooks are a basic reference for many musicians and students in Brazil. They feature the work of some of the country’s greatest composers in popular music. Guitar and harmony teacher Almir Chediak (Rio de Janeiro; 1950-2003) made sure his books reached the top level of perfection, an attitude that easily led to an enormous respect by both professional and amateur musicians. This reputation proved to be strong enough to seduce Jobim to sing “Três Apitos” on the accompanying album of the Noel Rosa Songbook. More invitations for other songbooks followed and Jobim suddenly realized that he had fun doing this; he sang the music of his favorite composers and friends! Apparently something that never entered his mind before. There could have been more material, but unfortunately Jobim passed away in New York before he could fulfill his wish to record “Caco Velho,” a composition by Ary Barroso. His recording of “Pra Machucar Meu Coração” for the Ary Barroso Songbook appeared to be the last song Jobim recorded in a recording studio. Still, at that moment Jobim had the largest number of Songbook participations on his name.Almir Chediak completed 18 songbooks and was finishing a 19th, with the work of João Bosco, when he was tragically killed (May 26th, 2003). Almir was shot in cold blood by the robbers he recognized while they were breaking in into his weekend house near Petrópolis. It caused an enormous shock in the music world all over Brazil and beyond. The importance of the sympathetic transcriber was already pointed out by Tom Jobim when he wrote in the introduction of the Bossa Nova Songbook: “I consider the work of Almir Chediak as an act of patriotism because it concerns the memory of Brazil.”Almir Chediak

The album was released for the first time in 1997. After being out of print for a long time, Minha Alma Canta is re-released again now in all its glory! It may be clear: The album is full of music history performed straight from the soul. This time from Jobim’s soul; Minha Alma Canta.Because of the rare occasion to hear Jobim sing other people’s work, his widow Ana and son Paulo Jobim convinced Almir Chediak to make a compilation of Jobim’s presence on the songbooks. The music comes from the six different songbooks on which Jobim participated: Noel Rosa, Vinícius de Moraes, Edu Lobo, Dorival Caymmi, Carlos Lyra and Ary Barroso. There are special guest appearances by Chico Buarque (“Choro Bandido” and “Sem Você”), Gal Costa (“Janelas Abertas” and “É Preciso Dizer Adeus”), Edu Lobo (“Pra Machucar Meu Coração”), Leila Pinheiro (“Valsa Brasileira”), Paula Morelenbaum (“Por Toda a Minha Vida”) and Ana Jobim on “O Bem do Mar.”



Tom jobim

Tom Jobim
My Soul Sings (The Great Brazilian Songbook) 
DRG Brazil DRG-CD-3162 (2010)
Total Time: 47’33”


  1. Na Batucada da Vida (Ary Barroso – Luiz Peixoto)
  2. Três Apitos (Noel Rosa)
  3. Choro Bandido (Edu Logo – Chico Buarque)
  4. João Ninguém (Noel Rosa)
  5. Janelas Abertas (Tom Jobim – Vinícius de Moraes)
  6. Samba do Carioca (Carlos Lyra – Vinícius de Moraes)
  7. Pra Machucar Meu Coração (Ary Barroso)
  8. Chega de Saudade (Tom Jobim – Vinícius de Moraes)
  9. Valsa Brasileira (Chico Buarque – Edu Lobo)
  10. Milagre (Dorival Caymmi)
  11. Sem Você (Tom Jobim – Vinícius de Moraes)
  12. Por Toda a Minha Vida (Tom Jobim – Vinícius de Moraes)
  13. É Preciso Dizer Adeus (Tom Jobim – Vinícius de Moraes)
  14. O Bem do Mar (Dorival Caymmi)