quinta-feira, 1 de novembro de 2012

The Wonderful World of Antonio Carlos Jobim - with Nelson Riddle

  1. She's A Carioca
  2. Agua De Beber
  3. Surfboard
  4. Useless Landscape
  5. Só Tinha De Ser Com Você
  6. A Felicidade
  7. Bonita
  8. Favela
  9. Valsa De Pôrto Das Caixas
  10. Samba Do Aviao
  11. Por Toda A Minha Vida
  12. Dindi
The Wonderful World

ANTONIO CARLOS JOBIM. A slight, unvarnished young man, looks deceptively young for so much fame, so much talent. The author of many works, all uniquely his, including "One Note Samba" and "The Girl from Ipanema".

And with this album he introduces a dozen more uniquities.

He sits at his microphones, his hair undressed, finger-combed. His right leg crossed over his left to support his guitar. The lyrics, written by Academy Award writer Ray Gilbert, are new, unfamiliar sounds sounds for him to interpret. To one side, Brazilian drummer Domum Romdo, imported by Jobim for this recording.

Jobim's voice, audible in the studio only to the microphone. He pronounces carefully, moving his jaw precisely for each vowel.

Beside him, the arranger conducts his orchestra, Riddle, looking dour, an exacting artist, imperceptibly relaxes the beat. With a patience born of years of elite and taxing assignments, Riddle controls the sprawling rows of musicians before him. The room has quiet about it, the quiet that settles only when a great and respected fellow musician concentrates on his art.

"Nelson, that is beautiful, that is beautiful. Could I speak something to the clarinets".

Jobim meets the reed section. He quietly lines out a rhythm pattern, nudging one sixteenth-note to great prominence. The clarinets bend across their music stands closer to Jobim, as if he were whispering the combination to his vault.

He moves back to his microphones, to his cigarette. He inhales, and his cheeks pull in hollow. His face a question mark as he unhurriedly re-reads his score. He examines each measure as if it were the final stroke on the Mona Lisa. Unhurried, while the less musical world sits by at $15 a minute and waits, while Jobim studies his score. Jobim, like a meticulous customs guard who isn't about to be hurried in his item-by-item checking.

He is ready again.

He begins to play his guitar, peering down at his fingers. His brown hair tumbles over, weeding his forehead. He slows the beat, delighting in his suspenseful rhythms. The same kicks as mortals get from a double-quick Sousa march.

He sings. His eyes peer out over his music stand, seeing the beaches of Brazil, the soft girls, the pale winds. His eyes, as if unaccustomed to the bright studio day, blink frequently.

The first chorus is complete. Jobim smiles slightly at the corners of his mouth as he presses the fingering of his newborn into the frets.

(Stan Cornyn from the original liner notes)

Unlike his debut, Jobim's second LP for the American market was strictly a pop album, with the composer himself singing, while the arranging/conducting chores were placed in the capable hands of Nelson Riddle. What promises to be an excellent collaboration, however, doesn't quite turn out, and the results are much more bland than could be expected from such distinct talents. To begin with, Riddle's charts are surprisingly safe, quite a disappointment from the man whose work with Frank Sinatra raised the bar for the art of arranging. Jobim's contributions are less than expected also, limited for the most part to his quavering vocals (Warner Bros. seems to have been positioning him as a pop star) and a set of compositions inferior to his first album (only "Agua de Beber" is repeated here). Jobim's is the voice of a composer, though, and what he lacks in tonal quality and strength he does make up for with delivery and subtlety of interpretation, especially on contemplative material like "Dindi" and "A Felicidade." It's not all Brazilian ennui; the instrumental "Surfboard" has a playful edge, with a rush of strings bringing on the collapse of each wave, and "She's a Carioca" (with English lyrics by Ray Gilbert) is a cheerful sequel to "The Girl From Ipanema." 

(By John Bush from allmusic.com)

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