Cartola – O mundo é um moinho (1976)

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Cartola
O mundo é um moinho
1976 Discos Marcus Pereira

1. O Mundo É Um Moinho
2. Minha
3. Sala De Recepção
4. Não Posso Viver Sem Ela
5. Preciso Me Encontrar
6. Peito Vazio
7. Aconteceu
8. As Rosas Não Falam
9. Sei Chorar
10. Ensaboa Mulata
11. Senhora Tentação
12. Cordas De Aço

The opening title track was written for Cartola’s daughter who left their home in Mangueira at 16 and (in the story I’ve heard, anyway) ended up working as a prostitute. It’s a classic, as is all of this record and especially ‘Sala de recepção’, ‘Aconteceu’, ‘Preciso me encontrar’, ‘As rosas não falam’… So many great songs!! Although Cartola had been instrumental to the development of samba during the 1930s and ran the most famous samba club in Rio with his wife Zica beginning in the early 60s, he did not record any material until the age of 66. This is his second album. You can read more about Cartola in a brief article at Wikipedia here, which is also where I grabbed the lyrics and a decent translation of the above mentioned track. I don’t think I really understood samba until I heard Cartola’s first two records. Ever since then, I’ve been in love with the art form. This is samba at it’s best, period.

O mundo é um moinho

Ainda é cedo, amor.
Mal começaste a conhecer a vida,
Já anuncias a hora de partida
Sem saber mesmo o rumo que irás tomar.

Preste atenção, querida,
Embora eu saiba que estás resolvida.
Em cada esquina cai um pouco tua vida.
Em pouco tempo não serás mais o que és.

Ouça-me bem, amor.
Preste atenção, o mundo é um moinho.
Vai triturar teus sonhos tão mesquinhos,
Vai reduzir as ilusões a pó.

Preste atenção, querida.
De cada amor tu herdarás só o cinismo.
Quando notares estás à beira do abismo.
Abismo que cavaste com teus pés.

Translation:

It’s still early, love.
You’ve barely started to know life,
You already announce the hour of departure
Without even knowing the direction you’ll take.

Pay attention, dear,
Although I know that you made up your mind
In each corner falls a little your life
Soon you’ll no longer be what you are.

Listen carefully, love.
Pay attention, the world is a mill.
It will grind your paltry dreams,
It will reduce your illusions to dust.

Pay attention, dear.
From each love, you’ll inherit only cynicism.
When you notice, you’re at the edge of the abyss.
Abyss you dug with your own feet.

Sparks video, Top of the Pops 1974

Ever walked into a place and had the palpable sense that there was somebody, perhaps multiple bodies, that didn’t want you there? Happened to me this weekend. I stayed, I danced, I talked to my real friends, I ate greasy diner food afterwards. But I’ve had this Sparks song going through my head ever since. Try it, it helps. The tune is “This Town Ain’t Big Enough For Both Of Us” and it is a roaring opening to their classic album, Kimono My House. This was actually a hit song if you can believe it. The video is from the UK program Top of the Pops and features the band pretending to play the song. Note that Russell Mael is particularly bad at lip-synching, and Ron Mael is, well, Ron Mael. Thanks to Beth in Chicago for turning me on to Sparks back in the day. Complete lyrics to this brilliant gem can be found here. Note also that they don’t actually finish the song before ToTP decides they’re done…

BITRATE MISTAKE, please re-download

Several recent uploads were listed as 320/kbs, the bitrate that I INTENDED to encode at. Somehow, these were ctually somewhere around 160-170 — a horribly and very lossy-sounding bit depth indeed. Conversion was done with dbPoweramp set at 320/kbs Average Bit Rate (ABR), and somehow all files converted at this setting ended up at about half that!

PLEASE for the love of God, redownload these. The following links have been replaced and if you grabbed these shares before the afternoon of August 25, I recommend replacing them with these:

Trio Mocotó (1973)

Jorge Ben – Força Bruta (1970)
Jorge Ben – Jorge Ben (1969)
My apologies for the inconvenience!

Gil Scott-Heron – From South Africa to South Carolina (1976)

In honor of true friends

One of my dearest friends left town yesterday for greener pastures. We may or may not ever share the same geographic space again, but our friendship has a closeness that can bridge the gap of distance. I admire Anneeth as I always have for her commitment to social justice; to uncovering the silences at the intersections of race, gender, and capital; her attention to the everyday violences, to the harm wrought with words of which we are all capable, the injustice we commit against ourselves when we internalize the brutality.

We live in a world that is increasingly fickle when it comes to spatial boundaries, an era of time-space compression where borders are obliterated in the service of power and reconstituted again in nativistic reflex. Sometimes our own boundaries become blurred. Sometimes we grow distant from those we care about, and who care about us; sometimes we have the good fortune to find them again. She was the first friend I made in this town. Together we shared many struggles adjusting to a social milieu much smaller than that to which we were accustomed, our nostalgia and longing for Chicago, our frustrations with the petty gossip, the performativity, and the drama that engulfs this privileged college town.

Anneeth helped me to remember that respect for all life and commitment to equity and justice begins with remembering to be gentle with ourselves, with an acknowledgement of our own right to be. She has inspired me to filter out the toxic and surround myself with the positive energy of solid, reliable people. For her courage, for her good humor in the face of uncertainty, and for her compassion toward me and many, many others — I dedicate this album of Gil Scott-Heron and Brian Jackson, words written in blood and fire and sung with a commitment to change worthy of her. For your friendship.
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Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson
From South Africa to South Carolina

1. Johannesburg 4:52
2. A Toast To The People 5:47
3. The Summer Of ’42 4:42
4. Beginnings (The First Minute Of A New Day) 6:23
5. South Carolina (Barnwell) 3:45
6. Essex 9:17
7. Fell Together 4:30
8. A Lovely Day 3:29
9. South Carolina (Barnwell) (Live) 6:29
10. Save The Children (Live) 4:23
11. Johannesburg (Live) 11:14
12. Let Me See Your I.D.

* note: The sound quality on this TVT “remaster” is, unfortunately, an abomination. It doesn’t take an engineer’s ear to notice the life has been sucked out of a lot of this wonderful music — listen to drummer Bob Adam’s cymbal work on the song ‘Beginnings.’ Notice how his cymbal hits have no sustain whatsover? That’s not natural. Notice the weird sounding digital artifacts and distortion. That’s not natural either. Both are the result of sloppy analog-to-digital conversion and indiscriminate use of Dolby noise reduction to the analog tapes. Somebody got paid to fuck up the music like that. Thankfully the content of this record is strong enough to help you not notice so much.

Review by Ron Wynn

The collaboration between Gil Scott-Heron and Brian Jackson was now a formal one, as they were issuing albums as a team. This was their second duo project to make the pop charts, and it included anti-nuclear and anti-apartheid themes, plus less political, more autobiographical/reflective material like “Summer of ’42,” “Beginnings (The First Minute of a New Day),” and “Fell Together.” Scott-Heron was now a campus and movement hero, and Jackson’s production and arranging savvy helped make his albums as arresting musically as they were lyrically.

Gil-Scott Heron pulled few punches on this powerful 1975 release, his second effort with the Midnight Band. The jazz here (“Summer of ’42,” “Essex”) is hard, flint-edged stuff, dipped in funk and Latin percussion. The ballads (“Beginnings,” “A Lovely Day”) are pretty, and the lyrics (especially on “A Toast to the People”) are potent. The Clash’s Mick Jones, a fan of Scott-Heron’s, once told Rolling Stone that “people would rather dance than fight wars,” but “Johannesburg” and the nuclear-power-protesting “South Carolina (Barnwell)” prove you can do both at the same time. Bonus tracks include live versions of the latter as well as the in-your-face anthem “Let Me See Your I.D.” from the 1985 Sun City project. –Michael Ruby

Jorge Ben – Força Bruta (1970) 320kbs ABR

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JORGE BEN
Força Bruta
Original release 1970
Dusty Groove America reissue 2007

This is a fantastic record. I was wrong with crediting the 1969 to Trio Mocotó yesterday — I believe the partnership actually began with this record. Formerly very difficult to track down, Dusty Groove has done us all a public service by making it available again!! BUY A COPY today

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Jorge Ben “Forca Bruta” (Philips, 1970)
A dreamy, relaxed album made with the Trio Mocoto (see below for more info about them…) A couple of the songs on here are regularly included on anthologies (“O Telefone Tocou Novamente,” “Charles, Jr.”) but most of this album is material that tragically has been on the backshelf for decades… I suppose this is the sort of album that you have to settle into — it’s very pretty and very laid back, cloaking a funky undercurrent in an acoustic samba wash, and intensely seductive. Why this album remains out of print is a real mystery

review from DGA
A fantastically soulful album from Jorge Ben — one of his greatest records ever, and a key part of Brazilian music in the 70s! The album marks an earthier shift for Jorge — a sound that’s still rooted in the samba influences of the 60s, but which also takes on a bit more soul at the bottom — thanks to rhythmic contributions from Trio Mocoto, who work here famously to help Ben shape the overall feel of the set! There’s still a bit of larger orchestrations at moments, but these are used sparingly just to sweeten the sound — leaving the main force of the music to come from Jorge’s guitar, and the cuica, percussion, and tamborim of the trio. The vocals are wonderful too — slightly raspy, and with a bit more feeling than we ever remember Jorge having on record — sometimes a bit intimate, yet always with an undeniable presence throughout. One of those records that still sends chills up our spines, year after year — with tracks that include “Oba La Vem Ela”, “Ze Canjica”, “Pulo Pulo”, “Apareceu Aparecida”, “Terezinha”, “Mulher Brasileira”, “Forca Bruta”, “O Telefone Tocou Novamente”, and “Charles Junior”.

TECHNICAL NOTE about playlists

Dear readers.. I refuse to use I-Tunes to play or organize music (until they have native support for FLAC, i.e. never, I will continue to use Foobar2000 or, in a pinch, WinAmp). But since many people do, including my friends who regularly visit this blog, I thought I would mention something technical. Some of you may be experiencing the phenomenon of ending up with 2 copies of every song in your I-Tunes. This is most likely because you are importing the entire folder, and that folder contains an m3u playlist. The way to prevent this is to import ONLY the m3u file — it’s the file that only contains the name of the artist and album. This will result in importing only one copy of each track. The inverse way to do this is to exclude the m3u file and import all the rest, but I think the first option is easier. m3u playlists are probably used more widely with other players besides I-tunes, but I’m afraid I won’t be making any concessions to Itunes users — you’ll just have to deal with it. 😉