Emílio Santiago – Emílio Santiago (1975) {João Donato, Azimuth, Wilson das Neves..)

Emilio Santiago (1975)
1975, CID (8008)
CD Reissue, CID (0074102)1 Bananeira
(Gilberto Gil, João Donato)
2 Quero alegria
(Guilherme de Brito, Nelson Cavaquinho)
3 Porque somos iguais
(Pedro Camargo, Durval Ferreira)
4 Batendo a porta
(Paulo César Pinheiro, João Nogueira)
5 Depois
(Otávio Daher, Ivan Lins)
6 Brother
(Jorge Ben)
7 La mulata
(Paulo Sergio Valle, Marcos Valle)
8 Nega Dina
(Zé Keti)
9 Doa a quem doer
(Ivan Lins)
10 Sessão das dez
(Édson Lobo, Tita, Renato Rocha) 

Truth be told, I am not a huge fan of Emilio Santiago. In fact all I have is this album, ‘Comigo é assim’ and `Feito Pra Ouvir` which might be his most famous from the 70s. But his early stuff is worth checking out, especially this debut album. This one is, in fact, pretty bad-ass. Emilio was sort of a protege, or at least a `discovery` of Roberto Menescal, who wrote the liner notes for this album and produced `Feito Pra Ouvir` a few years later.

In truth this album may be most interested for the insane lineup of musicians who contributed to it. João Donato’s contribution on the electric Rhodes is the most obvious — as is the song he co-wrote with Gilberto Gil, “Bananeira”, as solid a piece of Brazil funk as you could find. Donato also gives the track “La mulata” (penned by the brothers Valle) a salsa-style arrangement that stands out quite nicely. The funk-fusion band Azimuth provides backing on one track only, Jorge Ben’s “Brother.” Now, ‘Brother’ is from what many regard as Ben’s best album ever — A Tábua de Esmeralda — but for me that song has always been the weakest link in the great chain of that record. Here, I dare say that Emilio may surpass the original, and with big credit due to Azimuth, who make the song hit much harder than Ben’s laid-back style.

You can see the rest of the big names who helped out on this record on the CD tray like Wilson das Neves, Copinha, Ivan Lins, Dori Caymmi… Keeping in mind that the lineup of the musical backing changes on every track, sometimes entirely, the album is remarkably consistent in its sound. Emilio’s interpretations of sambas from the likes of Nelson Cavaquinho and João Nogueira are still growing on me, and perhaps they never will… His voice veers towards the schmaltzy style that would make him famous in the 80s and 90s. He is definitely not alone in giving classic samba that kind of slick treatment, but I will always prefer ‘samba do morro’ to ‘samba de calçada’ I guess..

By the way, his name is Emilio Santiago, in case you can’t read it clearly on the front cover of the album.  Bio in Portuguese

Carioca, começou a cantar em festivais universitários nos anos 70, quando freqüentava a faculdade de Direito. Participou também de programas de calouros na televisão, chegando às finais de um concurso no programa Flávio Cavalcanti, na TV Tupi. Foi crooner da orquestra de Ed Lincoln, e cantou em boates e casas noturnas. Seu primeiro compacto foi lançado em 1973 com “Transa de Amor” (S. Tapajós/ M. Amaral) e “Saravá Nega” (Odibar), o que abriu portas para participações em programas de rádio e televisão. Dois anos depois a CID grava o primeiro LP, “Emílio Santiago”, com músicas de Jorge Ben (“Brother”), João Donato (“Bananeira”) e outros. No ano seguinte assinou contrato com a Polygram, que lançou os dez discos seguintes. Foi eleito o melhor intérprete do Festival da TV Globo de 1985 com a música “Elis Elis” (E. Natolo Jr./ M. Simões). Em 1988 mudou para a gravadora Som Livre, onde iniciou o projeto “Aquarelas Brasileiras”, dedicado exclusivamente ao repertório de música brasileira. Lançou sete discos pelo projeto, alcançando a marca de 4 milhões de cópias vendidas. No final da década de 90 lançou discos fora do Aquarela Brasileira, inclusive um em homenagem ao cantor Dick Farney.

 

flac button

password: vibes

(edit/update, March 20, 2013 – Emílio passed away today, only in his 60s too..  So I fixed the links here and reposted, but without any other changes.  Maybe in the coming weeks I’ll try to get another of his records up here..)

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22 Comments

  1. mmmm…that break on bananeira is delicious! thank you.

  2. This album is so nice. A very strong debut & perhaps the best singer in Brasil for that era. Forget that "Feito Para Ouvir" from '77. Comigo É Assim [1977 Philips] & O Canto Crescente de Emilio Santiago [1979 Polygram] are both better albums. This record & "Comigo É Assim" are his best.

  3. The only song from this album which does nothing for me is the track "Brother", other then that one mis-step, this record is pretty darn good.

    • It's a music from Jorge Ben, and you can't really understand it, because it's a brazilian eye from your language influences here, so it's definetly possible that you don't understand it.
      And also for the fact that it doesn't matter much lirycally, and it definetly rocks, there's too much swing in it, so much that you can't be still listening to it.

    • Well, I speak perfectly fluent Portuguese and I don't care for that song at all – in fact I don't even particularly like Jorge Ben's original. Perhaps it is because as an atheist I find it deeply offensive 🙂 But no, probably not: I love Roberto Carlos' "Jesus Cristo", it's a fantastic song. So, yes, maybe I don't care for awkward appropriations of the English language in Brazilian music, but that certainly doesn't imply that I do not understand it. "Olhar brasileiro" não tem nada ver. Me lembra de alguém que falou por um gringo "tú não gosta de Djavan porque não entende as letras" e ele respondeu, "Nada disso. Não gosto de Djavan por que ele é uma merda…"

  4. "Comigo É Assim" is my first exposure to this artist & is perhaps his most enjoyable LP. So please give that one a listen. It's on my page.

  5. I don't know if I would classify this as "Soul". Tim Maia is a soul-singer. Emilio is more of a Jazz-singer. MPB is a better classification since Emilio sings in a few different styles. Ballads kinda put me to sleep though.

  6. The more I listen to this debut the more I feel that it's a bit uneven, but it has more then a few good numbers making it a keeper. It's amazing that
    "Feito Para Ouvir" was released the same year as "Comigo É Assim" in 1977, because "Comigo É Assim" is a much more engaging listen with outstanding song choices & production. "Feito Para Ouvir" is way too sappy & slow for my tastes.

  7. ha, Justin, you are having the same experience I had when listening to this album.. kind of a `diminishing returns` effect. Even, but still a keeper.

    I only made it through `Feito Para Ouvir` once, actually. It is very drippy and smooth indeed, for some reason its considered a big deal in his catalog. I need to give "Comigo é assim" another listen — i grabbed it from you way back and it is on a hard drive somewhere in the Kayman Islands. 🙂

  8. Great to get a flac upgrade, many thanks. Some very nice tunes here. Funny that the Valle-written, Donato-produced 'La Mulata' sounds much more like a Donato tune than a Valle tune. Not unsimilar to some of Donato's stuff from 'Lugar Comum'.

  9. Great album. Unfortunately this version it´s a REMASTER. The only thing REMASTERS do is f… up the music. I don´t understand why people can´t use the volume knob and get rid of this musical genocide called REMASTER. It kills the dynamic range of the original, specially on the 70´s when mixing engineers used to know what the word dynamics means. I´ll keep trying to find it original.

  10. hmm, Don, I am 100% with you on the remaster critique (if you spend some time looking around this blog, you will we see me complaining about it PLENTY!). But a little gratitude would be nice, too. I put a lot of effort into this here blog. I do vinyl rips when I can often just exactly because of this — I think the CD remastering is garbage, brick-wall volume-war stuff. But this album I have yet to come across used in the stalls, and as far as I know (and I could be wrong) this is the only CD pressing.

    Thanks anyway for your near-appreciation.

  11. I have the vinyl copy somewhere and it probably does sound better in some ways, but then it is more crackly than this. Anyway well worth it for those who don't have it.

    Completely disagree with the comments about "Brother" – not as good as the original (who can beat Jorge Ben anyway) but still a nice version IMO.

    As far as his other stuff goes, I play the track O Amigo De Nova York in clubs a fair bit and it always gets a good reception.

    Thanks for the monumental effort.

  12. Amazing album!!!
    THX for flac amigo!!! ))

  13. both links are down! 🙁

  14. they are fixed now, chris

  15. Emilio passed away today… Thanks for the music.

  16. He was a great singer and this is a very good album.

    Thank you so much for taking the time to reupload.

  17. He was a great singer and this is a very good album.

    Thank you so much for taking the time to reupload.

  18. Both links are down. Could you please, oh please, re-up this ?

    Thanks a BUNCH.

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