Samba Jazz Alley, by Dr. Debra Jan Bibel –

Antonio Adolfo, pianist, composer, arranger, band leader, and educator, honors the alley in Rio de Janeiro ["Bottles Alley," because of the thrown down bottles in protest of the loud music and conversation] where in his youth in 1962 he received his education in new music, hearing jazz, samba, and bossa nova coming out of four nightclubs. He eventually was allowed into the clubs after attaining authorization from the Juvenile Court for his newly formed trio to perform. Recorded in Rio with studio musicians, these big band renditions of pieces by Johnny Alf, Baden Powell, Edu Lobo, João Donato; Antonio Carlos Jobim, and Adolfo himself are richly and comfortably arranged. Solos, as with trombone [Rafael Rocha & Serginho Trombone], harmonicas [Mauricio Einhorn and Gabriel Grossi], trumpet and flugelhorn [Jesse Sadoc], saxophones [Marcelo Martins], and flute [Marcelo Martins] cement the album in jazz. Throughout, Adolfo at the piano provides tasty supportive phrasing. While raised in Rio, trained under Nadia Boulanger, collaborated with a host of Brazilian musicians, and accumlating a discography that includes choro and bossa nova, his approach is always swinging jazz with gentle Latin jazz flavorings. The album is perfectly delightful for winding down at the end of the day. 48 minutes.