To say that everybody loves Brazilian music would be too general. But clearly, the sound has a mystique, as so many have embraced it. Percussionist Adriano Santos revisits the music of several Brazilian composers with In Session.
Raul Mascaranhas' "Sabor Carioca" brings a vision of fine dining in Rio to life. The high-energy piece is led by alto saxophonist David Binney, with solid contributions from the rest of the quintet. Pianist Helio Alves solos over Santos, bassist David Ambrosio, and percussionist Dende. Near the end of the piece, Santos and Dende enjoy a brief percussive call-and-response with the rest of the band, a brief conga fanfare then setting up a drum solo.
"From the Lonely Afternoons," written by Milton Nascimento and Fernando Brant, begins softly, with percussion and piano evoking the atmosphere of an isolated beach near the jungle. As the tempo picks up, the sax takes point with a charming melody, followed by a strong solo from Alves.
Victor Assis Brasil's "Pro Zeca" is another hard-charging selection. Riveting piano over bass and drums sets the samba mood, with Binney leading the melody and, after a quick stop, a solo that's as engaging as the rest of the song. Alves keeps the mood intact during his turn, with Ambrosio, Dende and Santos complementing the lead with strong accompaniment. Dende and Santos enjoy an extended duet before the song returns to the melody.
In Session is a prime example of why many musicians love Brazilian music. Santos' interpretations honor past performers without losing sight of his own personal stamp.
Sabor Carioca; From the Lonely Afternoons; De Ton Pra Tom; Xibaba; Contemplacao; Pro Zeca; Amphibious; Ninho Da Vespa.
Adriano Santos: drums, percussion; David Binney: alto saxophone; Helio Alves: piano; David Ambrosio: acoustic bass; Dende: percussion.
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