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Marcel Camargo and the Brazil You Never Heard – Behind Jobim – featuring vocals by Gretchen Parlato, backed by 11-piece band plus strings
Live at Caffe Vivaldi, Vol. 2 – Original Brazilian Jazz by Roger Davidson [TrackList follows] – Roger Davidson Trio – Soundbrush

Marcel Camargo and the Brazil You Never Heard – Behind Jobim – featuring vocals by Gretchen Parlato, backed by 11-piece band plus strings – self, 22:41 (7/15/15) ****:

Live at Caffe Vivaldi, Vol. 2 – Original Brazilian Jazz by Roger Davidson [TrackList follows] – Roger Davidson Trio – Soundbrush SR 4002 (2015) ****:

It’s interesting that both of these CDs of original compositions in the Brazilian jazz style have one selection each that not an original, and in both cases that track is by Antonio Carlos Jobim, the country’s most renowned composer/songwriter. In the case of the Camargo album (he’s Brazilian) he selected “How Insensitive,” which is based on Chopin’s Prelude in e Op. 28. Camargo uses a string quartet and there’s a vocal by Parlato.

The other tracks on this delightful but much too short CD (we don’t usually do EPs) are not by Camargo but by various composers that were influential to Jobim, including Jule Styne & Sammy Cahn, who wrote “I Fall in Love Too Easily.” Most of the others involve Brazilian composers such as Pixinguinha and Garoto, and the lovely closing track is “Imagina,” a collaboration of Jobim and Chico Barque. Such fun – just wish there was more.

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We reviewed a Davidson CD back in 2012. Vol. 1 by pianist/composer (and founder of Soundbrush Records) Roger Davidson was just a duo with bassist Pablo Aslan. The 11 compositions are all by Davidson, but the piano was slightly out of tune. Not so on Vol. 2, which features the trio and a dozen original Brazilian pieces by Davidson plus “Garota de Ipanema” by Jobim. The Caffe Vivaldi is in Greenwich Village and has become the home bass of the Trio. Pablo Aslan returns to perform on three of the tracks here.

All the selections are worth hearing, and support the Brazilian idiom as probably the most interesting jazz/world music in the world today. The recording quality is also very high and natural-sounding.

TrackList:

1.Journey to Rio 5:28

2.Roxo 4:09

3.Dream Samba 3:53

4.Fico Feliz 6:56

5.Caminhada de Verão:35

6.Garota de Ipanema 5:27

7.Celia 7:21

8.Gentle Ocean 5:56

9.Oraçao Para o Amor 6:46

10.Brisa Morna 2:54

11.Spring Samba 6:17

12.Ocean Breeze 5:07

13.To Brazil With Love 2:43

—John Henry

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