Kenia: Simply Kenia (2008)
Simply Kenia is a terrific collection of Brazilian music, pop, and jazz. Highlights include a beautiful "Angel Eyes," graced by Romero Lubambo's guitar; Djavan's "Being Cool," with Lorraine Feather's wry lyrics; "Lamentos," a classic choro composed by the much-beloved Pixinguinha; and the luscious "Open Invitation," which was written by two of the New York Voices and first introduced on their 1993 album for GRP, What's Inside. There are also multi-lingual takes on Willie Nelson's "Crazy," as Kenia takes the famous tune that defined Patsy Cline and turns it into three sensuous sambas in English, Spanish, and Portuguese. There's even a bit of rap on "Deixa Dilson Vamos Nelson," where Jorjao da Silva demonstrates the unique, singsong beauty of the Brazilian language. Each track is expertly arranged by legendary keyboardist/composer Cesar Camargo Mariano, who was married to the equally legendary Elis Regina but stands on his own as a first-call musician.
All told, Simply Kenia demonstrates why, fifty years after the debut of bossa nova, such tropical sounds remain an integral part of popular music. It's a warm and welcoming CD, full of melody, heart, and the uniquely sensuous rhythms of Brazil.
Track Listing: Par, Impar; Catupiry; Crazy; Anjo Da Velha Guarda; Being Cool; Your Face; Olha Ai; Lamentos; Deixa Dilson Vamos Nelson; O Que Vier Eu Traco; Angel Eyes; Nacao; Open Invitation; bonus tracks: Louca, Loca.
Personnel: Kenia Acidly: vocals; Cesar Camargo Maariano: piano, keyboards, electronic percussion; Romero Lubambo: guitars, cavaquinho; Teo Lima: drums; Leo Traversa: bass; Armando Marcal, Lucas Ashby, Jorjao da Silva, Jay Ashby: percussion.
Record Label: Mooka Records