Make a difference: Support jazz online

Support All About Jazz Your friends at All About Jazz are looking for readers to help back our website upgrade project. Of critical importance, this project will result in a vastly improved design across all devices and will make future All About Jazz projects much easier to implement. Click here to learn more about this project including donation rewards.

483

Eliane Elias: Bossa Nova Stories

Dr. Judith Schlesinger By

Sign in to view read count
This terrific recording by Eliane Elias salutes the 50th anniversary of bossa nova in a number of explicit ways. For one thing, it contains the three most famous tunes by its most famous composer, Antonio Carlos Jobim ("Girl from Ipanema," "Desafinado," and "Chega de Saudade,"), where Elias paraphrases his familiar piano solos; for another, the generous use of strings is a nod to Jobim's classic albums with arranger Claus Ogerman. "It's a part of the sound," Elias explains, "and it suits the music so beautifully." Finally, there's the spirited participation of guitarist Oscar Castro-Neves and drummer Paulo Braga, both bossa nova pioneers who have long experience playing with Jobim.



Bossa Nova Stories is an ideal showcase for Elias, whose music is both grounded in tradition and full of surprises. Her last CD, Something for You, was a well-received tribute to Bill Evans which also yielded a concert of historic import as well.

This one includes her tropical take on hits by Stevie Wonder ("Superwoman") and Chris Montez ("The More I See You"), and gems by Johnny Mercer and George Gershwin. There are also newer Brazilian classics: "I'm Not Alone," composed by (and sung with) Ivan Lins, whom many consider to be Jobim's melodic successor, and the gorgeous "Estate" ("Summer"), which was written by two Italians, but transformed into a bossa anthem by Joao Gilberto (on his Live in Montreux album [Elecktra/Asylum/Nonesuch, 1985]). This "Estate" also features the legendary Toots Thielmans playing luscious harmonica at the age of 85. And as always, whatever the era or style of the music, Elias swings it like mad.



By now, Elias is well-established as an exceptional composer, singer, and classically-trained pianist. Her voice on Bossa Nova Stories is better than ever; it has evolved from soft and breathy to strong and compelling, which Elias attributes to a recent coach who "opened up a whole new world" for her. But some things never change, like her very Gilberto-like ability to float over the rhythm with impeccable time, and the fact that, if you listen carefully, you can hear her smile as she sings.



This CD will delight existing Elias fans, and invariably recruit many others. Elias's sound is unique and instantly identifiable, and she also possesses that rare ability to lift the spirits of everyone who hears her. Bossa Nova Stories is absolutely first-rate, joyous stuff and highly recommended.


Track Listing: he Girl From Ipanema; Chega De Saudade; The More I See You; They Can't Take That Away From Me; Desafinado; Estate (Summer); Day In Day Out; I'm Not Alone (Who Loves You?); Too Marvellous For Words; Superwoman; Falsa Baiana; Minha Saudade; A Ra (The Frog); Day By Day.

Personnel: Eliane Elias: vocals and piano; Oscar Castro Neves: guitar; Marc Johnson: bass; Paulo Braga: drums and percussion; Toots Thielemans: harmonica (7, 13); Ivan Lins: vocal (8); Orchestra arranged and conducted by Rob Mathes (1, 3, 5, 6, 8, 9, 14).

Title: Bossa Nova Stories | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Blue Note Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Live at Pyatt Hall CD/LP/Track Review Live at Pyatt Hall
by Jack Bowers
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Flying Heart CD/LP/Track Review Flying Heart
by Troy Dostert
Published: January 23, 2018
Read The 3Dom Factor: Live in Krakow CD/LP/Track Review The 3Dom Factor: Live in Krakow
by John Sharpe
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Solano Canyon CD/LP/Track Review Solano Canyon
by Glenn Astarita
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Lucas CD/LP/Track Review Lucas
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: January 22, 2018
Read In Paris: The Definitive ORTF Recording CD/LP/Track Review In Paris: The Definitive ORTF Recording
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: January 22, 2018
Read "Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1" CD/LP/Track Review Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 24, 2017
Read "Solo: Reflections and Meditations on Monk" CD/LP/Track Review Solo: Reflections and Meditations on Monk
by Mark Corroto
Published: November 29, 2017
Read "Alaya" CD/LP/Track Review Alaya
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 9, 2017
Read "Neko" CD/LP/Track Review Neko
by Karl Ackermann
Published: June 2, 2017
Read "Official Bootleg: Live in Chicago, June 28th, 2017" CD/LP/Track Review Official Bootleg: Live in Chicago, June 28th, 2017
by John Kelman
Published: October 12, 2017
Read "The Hidden Notes - Spirit Of Adventure" CD/LP/Track Review The Hidden Notes - Spirit Of Adventure
by Budd Kopman
Published: February 18, 2017