VA – O Fino da Bossa (1964) (Alaíde Costa, Jorge Ben, Nara Leão, Zimbo Trio, Oscar Castro Neves, Wanda Sá)

“O Fino da Bossa”
O show “O Fino da Bossa” recorded at the Paramount Theatre in São Paulo, 25th of May, 1964.
Original LP produced by Walter Silva
CD repressing on RGE 1994
Alaide Costa
Zimbo Trio
Rosinha de Valenca
Ana Lucia
Paulinho Nogueira
Jorge Ben
Wanda Sá
Nara Leao
Oscar Castro Neves
Some interesting photos included in the packaging, which feature a young Flora Purim and Toquinho, neither of whom seemingly participated in the recording, but they sure do look pretty
01 – Onde Está Você (Oscar Castro Neves / Luvercy Fiorini) – Alaíde Costa
02 – Garota de Ipanema (Tom Jobim / Vinicius de Moraes) – Zimbo Trio
03 – Samba Medley | Gosto Que Me Enrosco (J. B. da Silva “Sinhô”) Agora É Cinza (Alcebíades Barcelos “Bide” / Armando “Marçal”) Duas Contas (Garoto) Bossa na Praia (Pery Ribeiro / Geraldo Cunha) – Paulinho Nogueira
04 – Tem Dó (Baden Powell / Vinicius de Moraes) – Ana Lúcia
05 – Consolação (Baden Powell / Vinicius de Moraes) – Rosinha de Valença
06 – Chove Chuva (Jorge Ben “Jorge Benjor”) – Jorge Ben
07 – Desafinado (Tom Jobim / Newton Mendonça) – Wanda Sá
08 – Maria Moita (Carlos Lyra / Vinicius de Moraes) – Nara Leão
09 – Berimbau (Baden Powell / Vinicius de Moraes) – Oscar Castro Neves
As the liner notes explain, this concert was recorded less than two months after the military coup that plunged the country into twenty-plus years of repression and censorship. Brazil already having undergone its share of rapid power shifts across the first half of the twentieth century, a lot of people still thought (or hoped) it was a temporary state of affairs. (Actually the generals who took over the country promised to hold elections after they had the situation ‘under control’, which of course never happened except in the most artificial of ways years later). It is surprising to read in these notes how this show was not only sold out but — being that the Paramount only held about 2000 people or so — that people were breaking the glass in doors and windows to force their way in! ! Anyway, the music here is excellent and has some real rarities. Alaíde Costa, still the most underrated of the bossa nova chanteuses, opens the recorded set. Zimbo Trio, led by bassist Luiz Chaves, run through a ripping version of ‘A Garota de Ipanema’ that makes me forget how tired I am of hearing that song — I could be mistaken but I believe that they were the first bossa-jazz trio to play an instrumental version of the tune… Paulinho Nogueira provides a solo acoustic guitar medley of tunes that probably goes on for too long. I have a couple of Nogueira’s albums on vinyl and I like him well enough, they are enjoyable, but he often comes across as a diluted and derivative version of Baden Powell or sometimes João Gilberto (when he sang) combined, without the inspiration or innovation of either of those two. He did however bring a different type of finger-picking style to the way he played samba that is different from Baden.
A nice thing about this record is that we get some of the less famous bossa nova singers who haven’t been canonized into musical sainthood like their brethren, names like Ana Lúcia, Rosinha da Valença, and Wanda, whose records can be hard to track down. Jorge Ben’s live version of “Chove Chuva” is slower and more jazzed-out than the album version, and its quite a treat given how early in his career this is. Note that this track was NOT included in the 2-CD set of rarities that was part of the boxset ‘Salve, Jorge!’ from 2009. Nara Leão is amazing as always singing Maria Moita, and the sound quality on this track is amazing. In fact the whole record sounds great but this one stands out for some reason. The album closes with ten minutes of Oscar Castro Neves’ group giving a majestic treatment of “Berimbau” that includes a full orchestral arrangement in the middle. Too bad all the musicians are uncredited, especially since the guitar sounds.. familiar. Almost like it might be Baden Powell. Who played on a lot of albums uncredited. Hmmm…

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  1. ..deleted the grouchy response from earlier. Also I never said I didn't know George Duke — the guy has played on a bunch of great albums (and not just the Zappa ones) and has put out great stuff under his own name too. I only said I didn't know *that* album. And yeah, I`m skeptical about it, which probably makes me a snob, but it's an educated guess based on the stuff all those musicians were doing in the late 70s. I'll take a look around for it, though. That Cannonball Adderley album with basically the same lineup is def. worth checking out, even with its week spots. One of lesser known of his David Axelrod produced albums too.

  2. Flabber – can't open the file. Tried *that* without any success. What, oh mysterious one, is the key to my dreams? And thanks for the blog. Like the commentaries and eclectic take on the music.

  3. Hi, enjoy your blog a lot. Being ignorant of Brazilian history I was amazed when a friend from there told me the music on the radio was wonderful up to the day of the coup and then it was all bubblegum pretty much. Anyway, how about a hint on the key?

  4. I'd like to give a few bits of my mind here: I'm old enough to have lived that period and I' like to let you know that Jorge Ben was the biggest celebrity among all those who performed that night in April 1964. His 'Samba Esquema Novo' was the best-selling album of 1963. Elis Regina was simply 'nobody' in early 1964. Elis was one year away from 'Arrastão' which made her popular in 1965. What else? Actually, there are two Bossa Novas. The 'classic' one started up with Jobim,Vinicius & João Gilberto in 1958. Then, there is the 'other' Bossa Nova, which is the 'political' BN, which started when Nara Leão rebelled against the 'love, smile & the flower' concept and recorded a whole album with sambas from Rio slums [the farthest away possible from 'elevators'] and the music from Northeastern Brazil the poorest part of the country. The 'elevator music BN' kept being listened to in the USA and the other BN became what they call MPB [Popular Brazilian Music].

  5. Vi que os membros do Zimbo trio estavam brigando pelo nome e que agora nao vao mais usar o nome Zimbo Trio.

    Daria para fazer um reup deste lindo disco obrigado

  6. Could you re-up that one? with the description, i got very excited to hear 🙂 thanks!

  7. Oh! And re-up this one too please. I have never been a fan of Flora Purim singing in English, but when she sings in her own language it touches me.

    But I can't blame her, those dumb ass American producers thought the US would not get it. Just like the American idiot producer who did not want Dom Um Romão to play drums because he thought Dom didn't sound 'American' enough.

  8. bumbo klaaaaaat

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