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.
Maria de Barros hails from the Cape Verde Islands, the home of Cesaria Evora, where a rich confluence of African, European and Latin American cultures have blended together since time immemorial. She is definitely more of a “pop” singer than the barefoot diva Evora. Her singing conveys the same sort of relaxed charm that was Astrud Gilberto’s hallmark, and of course the rhythms are often reminiscent of Brazil’s musics. Ms. de Barros is a chanteuse for the new century, fusing a modern spirit to very old song forms.
Cape Verdean musical forms ( mornas, coladeiras and the like) are still somewhat foreign to Western ears, requiring one to evaluate the material against what is known of its antecedents. In that light, this music is a true melting pot: the accordion and strummed guitars of “Cabo Verde N’ot Era” carry an Argentine air; “Regresa” has an almost cumbia feel; Ron Kalina’s harmonica reminds one of Toots Thielemans in a Latin context; Ramon Flores’ trumpet wails like Harry James on “Me Nada Um Ca Tem.” The feeling is uniformly warm, serene and good-spirited, a nice after-dinner drink for the ears.
De Barros’ vocal delivery is comfortable, almost matter-of-fact. She feels no need to hit the rafters or swing; such flourishes would be anathema to this sort of music, even if she does modernize it in bits and pieces. Highlights include her duet with Ismael Gallegos on “La Gloria Eres Tu,” the upbeat title track, and the tender rendition of Luis Bonfa’s “Manha de Carnaval” which closes the disc. An absolute must for fans of Evora and Latin music of all colors.
Personnel: Maria de Barros, vocals; Grecco Buratto, Dicki Tavares, Djoska Lopes, Jon Booth, guitars,
cavaquinhos; Ramon Stagnaro, guitar solos; Ramon Flores, trumpet; Erin Jorgensen, trombone;
Ray Herman, tenor & alto saxes; Frank Morocco, accordion; Ron Kalina, harmonica; Leo
Chelyapov, clarinet; Eric Gorfain, violin solos; Joe Ketendjian, Marina Manukian, Sarkis
Gyurgchyan, Hakob Mekinyan, Igor Kistachi, Ana Landauer, violins; Jorge Moraga, Harry Shirinian,
violas; Giovanna Moraga, cello; Djim Job, Mel Wilson (7 only), bass; Carlos "Kal
I love jazz because it’s what sounds
I was first exposed to jazz in my
parents household and in school
I appreciate many styles of jazz
and shy away from really outside
stuff. I enjoy relating to the
One of the best shows I ever
attended was 1975 Chick Corea’s
Return To Forever tour at an
intimate venue in downtown
The first jazz record I bought was
Herbie Hancock’s Chameleon.
My advice to new listeners is try
several styles before you decide
what jazz is all about!
Listen to music daily and stay open