4

Helio Alves and Duduka Da Fonseca (HD2): Songs from the Last Century

Dr. Judith Schlesinger By

Sign in to view read count
Helio Alves and Duduka Da Fonseca (HD2): Songs from the Last Century One of the many delights of writing for All About Jazz is stumbling upon a great CD from the past, and being able to bring it to an audience that might have missed its debut. It's clear that Songs from the Last Century is one of these rare gems—even before a single note is heard, the list of players and songs suggests that something very special is going on.

For one thing, the leaders are the superb pianist Helio Alves and drummer Duduka Da Fonseca (hence HD2), who are known as two of the greatest emissaries of Brazilian music and its happy cross-fertilization with American jazz. For this 2005 CD, they gathered together the formidable bassist Eddie Gomez, notably from the Bill Evans trio; the legendary saxophonist Phil Woods; the brilliant arranger of the string quartet, guitarist Oscar Castro-Neves, and two wonderful singers, Maucha Adnet and Paulo Jobim, whose sultry blend evokes the iconic sound of the great Antonio Carlos Jobim. That's no surprise, since Adnet recorded and toured with Jobim's Banda Nova for the last decade of his life, and Paulo is, quite audibly, his son.

The ten tunes are imaginative and wide-ranging, from the churning opener, "Three Views of a Secre,t" by Jaco Pastorius, with its masterful Woods commentary, to the closer, the beloved "Very Early" by Bill Evans, transformed here into a lilting samba with Gomez supplying a strong presence and a powerful solo. The journey also includes an exceptionally tasty tropical take on Toots Thielemans's signature "Bluesette," with Da Fonseca and Alves joyfully playing off each other, and a soulful "These Foolish Things," which Adnet has said is one of Jobim's favorite songs (another, for the record, is "I Concentrate on You," which he reportedly wished he had written).

Jerome Kern's "Yesterdays" is also in the mix, along with familiar compositions by Brazilian giants Hermeto Pascoal, Toninho Horta, Egberto Gismonti, and of course Jobim, whose "Sabia" takes on new dimensions with the contributions of Woods and strings (and those are real strings, not synth pads). In sum, Songs of the Last Century is an unusually creative blend of the sound and sensibilities of north and south, and played with great musicality, taste, and swing.

Track Listing: Three Views of a Secret; Blusette [sic]; Sabia; Bebe; Meu Canario Vizinho Azul; Yesterdays; Beijo Partido; Frevo; These Foolish Things; Very Early.

Personnel: Helio Alves: piano; Duduka Da Fonseca: drums; Eddie Gomez: bass; Phil Woods:alto saxophone; Oscar Castro-Neves: string arrangements; Maucha Adnet: vocals; Paulo Jobim: acoustic guitar, vocals; Joyce Hammann: violin; Dave Eggar: cello; Mark Feldman: violin; Kenji Bunch: viola.

Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Blue Toucan Music | Style: Brazilian


Shop

More Articles

Read Overseas V CD/LP/Track Review Overseas V
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 30, 2017
Read Behind The Mist CD/LP/Track Review Behind The Mist
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: March 30, 2017
Read Salão Brazil CD/LP/Track Review Salão Brazil
by John Sharpe
Published: March 30, 2017
Read Sedimental You CD/LP/Track Review Sedimental You
by John Sharpe
Published: March 30, 2017
Read Overseas V CD/LP/Track Review Overseas V
by Troy Collins
Published: March 30, 2017
Read Disappeared Behind the Sun CD/LP/Track Review Disappeared Behind the Sun
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 29, 2017
Read "Chromola" CD/LP/Track Review Chromola
by John Eyles
Published: March 23, 2017
Read "The Volume Surrounding The Task" CD/LP/Track Review The Volume Surrounding The Task
by Mark Corroto
Published: June 26, 2016
Read "Live At the Stone" CD/LP/Track Review Live At the Stone
by Karl Ackermann
Published: November 29, 2016
Read "Momentum" CD/LP/Track Review Momentum
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: September 22, 2016
Read "The Beautiful Day" CD/LP/Track Review The Beautiful Day
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 6, 2016
Read "Peace" CD/LP/Track Review Peace
by Karl Ackermann
Published: January 18, 2017

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!