Bola Sete Trios: Tour de Force
Pop songs prove another refineable resource and Sete, backed only by Rae’s cymbals subverts Mancini’s maudlin “Moon River” with delicacy and ingenuity. Where Sete slips a notch is in his decision to sing. Possessing a set of pipes and inflection not up to the task he croons through a handful of tunes like the early “Dilemma,” but fortunately his stellar guitar work carries enough weight to counterbalance his vocal shortcomings. Songs that would soon become Bossa Nova standards such as Jobim’s “Manhã de Carnaval” and Bonfa’s “Samba de Orfeú” also serve as beguiling entries in the trios’ songbooks. Each track blends easily into the next and over the disc’s hour duration Sete’s fluid fret style and tautly tuned acoustic strings serve as the perfect poultice for moods made dreary by the cloudy days of fall. Sete’s reputation may not have ascended to heights comparable to those scaled by peers such as Gilberto and Bonfa, but as these recordings denote, his ability to balance instrumental acumen with experimental verve was easily on par.
Track Listing: Up the Creek/ My Different World/ Dilemma/ Sweet Thing/ If You Return/ Samba Do Perroquet/ Manh
Personnel: Bola Sete- guitar; Ben Tucker- bass; Dave Bailey- drums; J.D. Paula- percussion; Carmen Costa- percussion. Recorded: October 22-26, 1962, NYC and June 18, 1963, San Francisco.
Record Label: Fantasy Jazz