Afrosambajazz: Music of Baden Powell
I remember well when Philippe and his mother Silvia first came to see us on the recommendation of Paulo Jobim, with whom we had produced Symphonic Jobim. We quickly became "old friends" and I told them about the strong impression that Baden's music made on me as a boy when my godfather introduced it to me. Baden was my first idol. Through his guitar playing, I came to know the music of people like Bach, Tom Jobim and Moacir Santos. Baden was the first artist to record Santos' "Coisas," those distinctive tunes that Moacir shared with him during their private lessons in "superior music," as Baden used to say. Moacir also taught Baden the Greek modes which so inspired him in the composing of the music for Os Afro Sambas. After dedicating several years to Moacir Santos's work and producing - with Zé Nogueira - works like Ouro Negro and Choros & Alegria, I felt that I could also translate some of the strong connections between Baden and Moacir into music. That's how the idea for Afrosambajazz (as baptized by my talented partner, Philippe) was born and which I dedicate not only to Baden but also to Moacir. Mario Adnet "He's the man !" was how my father referred to Mario Adnet after being interviewed by him for a newspaper article. Baden was impressed and excited by that meeting and it seemed that he had found someone with whom he could "shoot the breeze." He wrote down Mario's phone number on a sheet of music and let me know that I could call him anytime. After that - I don't remember how - I got my hands on Mario's album Para Gershwin & Jobim. I listened to it a lot and came to understand why my dad felt so connected to Mario. Some years later I had a strong desire to pay homage to my father and his music and decided to call that number. Afrosambajazz is our first collaboration. It's an instrumental conceptualization of Baden's work, inspired by the Afro Sambas and Afro-Brazilian culture in general. We selected some of Baden's solo compositions and tunes that he wrote in partnership with Vinicius de Moraes and Paulo Cesar Pinheiro. Some of the songs, their lead sheets carefully stored for many years, had never been recorded, including "Canto de Yansan," which Baden composed with the Salvadoran writer and poet Ildásio Tavares. To realize a project like this was a fantastic experience and one that I'd like to repeat soon. Philippe Baden Powell.
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