Badi Assad - Echoes of Brazil
  1. Batucada (Nos E O Rio)
  2. Abismo De Rosas
  3. Escadao
  4. Emotiva No 1.
  5. Sem Titulo
  6. Bachianinha No. 1
  7. Interrogando
  1. Tempo Feliz
  2. Uma Valsa E Dois Amores
  3. Estudo Para Violao
  4. Jorge Da Fusa
  5. Pixaim
  6. Furiosa
  7. Farewell

The latest CD from the talented Brazilian guitarist. Reviewed by Marcos Cavalcante

Marcos Cavalcante is from Salvador on Brazil's northeast coast. He has also lived in Bahia, Campinas, Minas Gerais and Sao Paulo and has absorbed the musics of all those regions. He brought that influence to the USA in 1990 when he came to Indiana University to earn his Masters degree in Jazz. He is currently a candidate for a Doctoral degree in Classical Guitar at IU, and his Brazilian band is known throughout the Midwest. His playing can be heard on the Bob Patterson CD Nuances. He is currently working on several books about Brazilian guitar playing.

Echoes of Brazil is a beautiful album that definitely achieved what the title suggests, especially for me, an old fan of Dilermando Reis, Joao Pernambuco, Garoto, Helio Delmiro, Egberto Gismonti and others. Listening to the album, I heard the echoes of good old memories of these masters of music, learning them by rote from the scratched up LPs played over and over on the family's turntable, in the early seventies.

Badi's playing is groovy, clean and dynamic. The selections are not only beautiful in melody and harmony, but also represent well the Brazilian guitar tradition, of which many composers are fortunately still among us.

The information in the liner notes is precise, written by great guitarist and composer Sergio Assad, Badi's brother. However, I will comment breifly on some of the composers and their work.

Isaias Savio was a Brazilian citizen born in Uruguay, who spent most of his years in Brazil, where he developed a reputation as a great master. Among his pupils were Henrique Pinto (one of the greatest guitar teachers in Brazil today), Paulo Belinatti (one of the leaders of the famous Brazilian Jazz group called Pau Brazil), Marco Pereira (a great guitarist and arranger who has recorded with Gal Costa and Gilberto Gil), Luis Bonfa (the composer of Black Orpheus), and guitar virtuoso Carlos Barbosa-Lima. Savio wrote extensively, not only educational materials, but also gorgeous compositions, most often Brazilian sounding. Batucada is one of his most famous compositions. In this album, it has been combined with a composition by the brothers Altamir and Edilson Penha.

Dilermando Reis was a famous guitar player in his day; he played a guitar with steel strings, and his repertoire constituted of waltzes, marches and choros; his compositions became standards in the Brazilian repertoire. Abismo de Rosas is one of his most famous waltzes, and Badi has spiced it with some juicy, delicious chords in this album.

Paulo Belinati is one of the most promising young guitarist/composers nowadays. Co-leader of the famous Pau Brasil, he also researches Brazilian folklore, and composes openly with that influence. He has done much serious research and transcription of the works of Garoto, which has been published and recorded in the USA. (Guitar Solo Publications of San Francisco has it).

This is an album that you will want to listen to over and over again. The moods vary, so do the rhythms and keys. You will even find improvisation on some of the songs, especially the ones performed by bassist Dave Finck. I recommend highly.

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