Tag Archives: bossa nova

Miles Davis, Robert Glasper feat. Erykah Badu – Maiysha (So Long) (2016)

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robert-glasper

New Year’s Day is part recovery and part celebration in my household. Enter Miles Davis. Last year, jazz pianist Robert Glasper reworked several soundbites of Miles Davis’ studio recordings for a tribute album called Everything’s Beautiful. One such recording is a remix of ‘Maiysha’ taken off a Davis performance found on the 1974 album Get Up With It. The revision features the vocals of Erykah Badu. We’re off for brunch. Happy New Year!

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Antena – Camino Del Sol (1982)

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Isabelle Antena

More genre defying sounds… step forward the bossa nova inflected electropop of Isabelle Antena. She was a founding member of, you guessed it, the Belgian-French trio Antena. This was the sound of cool in 1982. In fact, this cocktail would not have sounded out of place in the ultra lounge and downtempo resurgence of the late 1990s. The song featured as the title track of their debut EP released on Les Disques Du Crépuscule.

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Little Joy – Next Time Around (2008)

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Little Joy

Time for a little joy. Last week, it was Julian Casablancas; this week its another Strokes alumnus – the drummer Fab Moretti. He formed the band Little Joy with Brazilian Rodrigo Amarante and Californian singer-songwriter Binki Shapiro in 2008. A laid-back bossa nova influence is plain to hear in the summery sound of ‘Next Time Around’. It features on their eponymous debut album.

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João Gilberto – Chega De Saudade (1959)

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João Gilberto

Antonio Carlos Jobim and Vinicius de Moraes’s samba ‘Chega de Saudade’ as sung by João Gilberto is considered the ground zero of bossa nova. The three of them had spent their youth listening to the samba, jazz, trad and country music of the 1930s and 1940s. From it, they created the new way. Have a great weekend.

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Nara Leão – Insensatez (1971)

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Nara Leão

As with ‘The Girl from Ipanema’ and ‘Corcovado’, Tom Jobim wrote ‘Insensatez’ for João Gilberto – originally released in 1961. Ten years later, one of bossa nova’s muses, Nara Leão recorded a cover for her album Dez Anos Depois. It is my favourite version. Leão was no copycat, she had calibre too. During the 1950s, she had performed with João Gilberto. In the 1960s, she toured with Sérgio Mendes and would eventually team up with the Vila Velha Gang (e.g. Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil and Gal Costa) to feature on the 1968 album Tropicália: ou Panis et Circencis, a manifesto for the Tropicália movement.

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Elis Regina – Águas de Março (1972)

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Elis Regina

A stick, a stone, it’s the end of the road”… the England football team fall again. The opening line of ‘Aguas de Março’ is embedded in Brazilian popular music. It helps that the song was composed and first released by bossa nova legend Antonio Carlos Jobim, then covered by Elis Regina for the album Elis in 1972, and ultimately by both Elis and Tom Jobim in 1974. I chose Regina’s solo version because I think she brings out the purity of the song. A sublime end to a week touched by disappointment. Have a great weekend.

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Metronomy – I’m Aquarius (2013)

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Metronomy 2013

This week, Metronomy has released their latest long player and it sounds good, shoop-doop-doop-ah. It’s stripped back, it’s moody, it’s electronic and he’s aquarius. The second track off Love Letters, the song features a synthesised bossa nova and harmony vocals throughout – and they’re sung by drummer Anna Prior, not sequenced. In fact, listening to the album, Joseph Mount and his band have hit a seam of soul, however lo-fi.

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Antonio Carlos Jobim – Desafinado (1959)

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Antonio Carlos Jobim

Continuing the latin theme this week, the Brazilian Antônio Carlos Brasileiro de Almeida Jobim is the king of bossa nova. Like many of Jobim’s compositions, ‘Desafinado’ is performed by João Gilberto. Meaning ‘off-key’, Desafinado’ helped give birth to the easy sound of bossa nova in the early 1960s. It features on Gilberto’s 1959 album Chega De Saudade. A later version by Stan Getz and Charlie Byrd became a major hit in 1962.

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Stan Getz & the Gilbertos – Corcovado (1964)

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More Palin in Brazil last night, and so more bossa nova on Samuelsounds. In 1964, Stan Getz and guitarist João Gilberto released the classic jazz-bossa nova long player Getz/Gilberto. It became one of the best-selling jazz albums of all time, and turned the singer Astrud Gilberto into a star. For me, ‘Corcovado’ even surpasses her rendition of ‘The Girl from Ipanema’, both of which feature on the album. However, for all the crossover appeal of her first verse in English, it is her husband João’s second verse in Portuguese that so perfectly sits alongside Getz’s sax. I defy you not to like this song about Rio’s statuesque mountain peak.

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Caetano Veloso – Fina Estampa (1994)

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Last night, Michael Palin aired on primetime TV to show that he had filled a big gap in his passport – the sight and sounds of a vibrant Brazil. I was lucky enough to spend some time in São Paulo in 2011, and the recollection had me reaching for the bossa nova rhythms. The emotion of singer-songwriter Caetano Veloso’s gentle voice is undeniably Brazilian. Some songs conjur up more than just memories; they have the power to transport in an instant.

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Os Mutantes – A Minha Menina (1968)

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I visited São Paulo for the first time this summer, after which I revisited Soul Jazz’s Tropicália compilation from 2006. On there is this classic from 1968. Think Beatles in bossa nova, sprinkled with a little of Floyd’s The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn. Mutant indeed.

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