Ao Vivo/Live, by Musica Brasileira

Veteran pianist composer and arranger Antonio Adolfo (Rio de Janeiro, 1947) has maintained a prominent position in Brazilian music. Raised in a musical family, Antonio started his musical studies on the violin at age 7. The piano came at age 15. In the late 1960’s and early 1970’s, together with composer Tibério Gaspar, Antonio became a household name in Brazil through various successful compositions, such as “Sá Marina,” “Teletema” and “BR-3.” His name was a constant presence in Brazilian novela soundtracks as well as music festivals.

Daughter Carol Saboya (Rio de Janeiro, 1975) did not fall far from the same tree. She had her first recording on the market at age 8, when she released the single “A Menina e a TV,” singing with showman Miéle. While growing up, she did back-up work for several Brazilian popular artists, such as Erasmo Carlos and Angela Rô Rô. In 1989, she moved to the U.S., where she lived for 2 years. She appeared in Sergio Mendes’ Grammy winning album Brasileiro, performed at the 1994 International Association of Schools of Jazz (IASJ) and finally had her first solo album Dança da Voz released in 1998. That year she was recognized as the best new singer in Brazil. With two albums released in the Japanese market and four others in Brazil, Ao Vivo – Live is her seventh CD.

Antonio Adolfo & Carol SaboyaAo Vivo – Live was recorded on October 8, 2005 at the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music. Produced and directed by Antonio Adolfo, who also played the piano, Ao Vivo – Live featured vocals by Carol Saboya, guitars by Claudio Spiewak, bass by Gabriel Vivas and drums by Carlomagno Araya. The Brazilian International Press awarded the CD the distinction of 2007’s Most Outstanding Music CD Produced and Released in the U.S. With a repertoire such as the one performed here coupled with the excellent musicians featured in the recording, it is no wonder that Antonio Adolfo and Carol Saboya have a winning release under their belts. Father and daughter are totally at ease in this excellent album.

From the opening instrumental “Abertura,” the listener gets a pretty good idea of what’s to come. Mixing a U.S. standard with two Brazilian classics sets the mood for the album. The quartet goes right into a Bossa Nova groove with swinging bass, drums and guitar in “Você e Eu.” Carol’s captivating renditions finally satisfy all anticipation in “Fotografia,” in a very jazzy arrangement. She performs several well-known pieces from the Bossa Nova repertoire interspersed with other classics in Brazilian popular music. Dori Caymmi’s “O Cantador” (“Like a Lover”) is set in a medley with the folkloric piece “Meu Limão, Meu Limoeiro” and Gilberto Gil’s delicious “De Onde Vem o Baião.” Although Tom Jobim is represented here with a half dozen songs, the performers did not neglect other stellar Brazilian composers. We find Baden Powell, Pixinguinha, Ernesto Nazareth, Edu Lobo, Dorival Caymmi and others. Even Antonio Adolfo’s best known song, “Sá Marina,” gets its right place in this wonderful collection of Brazilian classics. In the middle of these great songs, Antonio Adolfo takes a moment half way through the show to pay tribute to two magnificent icons in Brazilian music: Pixinguinha and Ernesto Nazareth.

Ao Vivo – Live never loses its strength both vocally and instrumentally. Live recordings can sometimes be annoying with external sounds muffling the music and performers. That is not the case in this album. The audience was extremely respectful of the artists on stage. The result is an album full of energy and unforgettable music.