Toquinho e Vinicius – O Poeta e o Violão (1975)

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O POETA E O VIOLÃO (1975)
TOQUINHO E VINICIUS
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RGE (303.0032)

1 Tristeza
(Haroldo Lobo, Niltinho)
2 Marcha da quarta-feira de cinzas
(Carlos Lyra, Vinicius de Moraes)
3 Morena flor
(Toquinho, Vinicius de Moraes)
4 Chega de saudade
(Tom Jobim, Vinicius de Moraes)
5 Dora
(Dorival Caymmi)
6 Canto de Ossanha
(Baden Powell, Vinicius de Moraes)
7 Rosa desfolhada
(Toquinho, Vinicius de Moraes)
8 Berimbau
(Baden Powell, Vinicius de Moraes)
Consolação (Baden Powell-Vinicius de Moraes)
9 Januária
(Chico Buarque)
10 Insensatez
(Tom Jobim, Vinicius de Moraes)
11 Apelo
(Baden Powell, Vinicius de Moraes)
12 Garota de Ipanema
(Tom Jobim, Vinicius de Moraes)
13 O velho e a flor
(Bacalov, Toquinho, Vinicius de Moraes)
14 Nature Boy
(Eden, Ahbez)

Toquinho (Antônio Pecci Filho) – guitar and vocal
Vinicius de Moraes – vocal

Luis Enríquez Bacalov – piano on “O velho e a flor”

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TRANSCRIPTION INFO

Vinyl -> Pro-Ject RM-5SE turntable (with Sumiko Blue Point 2 cartridge, Speedbox power supply) > Creek Audio OBH-15 -> M-Audio Audiophile 2496 Soundcard -> Adobe Audition 3.0 at 24-bits 96khz -> Click Repair light settings, additional clicks and pops removed in Audition -> dithered and resampled using iZotope RX Advanced -> ID Tags done in foobar2000 v.1.0.1 and Tag & Rename. No EQ or compression.

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It’s a simple enough idea, and it works beautifully. Take these two masters, these two entities incorporating the bohemian culmination of seventeen years of the bossa nova lifestyle known as Vinicius and Toquinho, and put them in a room with nothing but a guitar and some microphones and have them play for four hours. This album plays like we are listening in on a rehearsal or a casual backstage jam session with all the tunes spun off the cuff, but if you listen carefully the sheen of spontaneity dims a little as you realize there is no way that these two — especially the old lush, Vinicius – could have nailed all these tracks so angelically in one take. On their earliest collaborations, Toquinho and Vinicius didn’t always sound this confident in their vocals and often brought in one or another chanteuse to fill the spotlight (Maria Bethania, Maria Cruesa, Miucha). The tracklist is a leisurely stroll through the bossa nova songbook, and the in-between song banter makes it sound like they are deciding on the repetoire right there on the spot. But, again, I ain’t buying it. The song choices, sequence, and arrangments are just too damn perfect – but this is a compliment and not a complaint. The only slightly false step is `Chega de saudade`, to which they add a whole lot of nothing special. Among the other song interpretations that do NOT have the name of Vinicius in the credits, is a respectable version of Chico Buarque’s “Januária”, jazz standard, Nat King Cole hit and touchstone of the bossa nova crowd “Nature Boy,” and a tune from Caymmi, “Dora.” The latter is one of Dorival Caymmi’s rare compositions that is *not* about Bahia but instead is an homage to the city of Recife. The remainder of the tunes dip into all of Vinicius’ famous writing partnerships – Tom Jobim, Carlos Lyra, and especiallY Baden Powell. Toquinho’s guitar playing may not have had the mercurial energy and vision of Powell, but he has a great sense of dynamics and a lovely voice that blends excellently with Vinicius, giving an urgency and excitement to ‘Canto de Ossanha” and “Berimbau” that do justice to everyone involved, and in the case of “Apelo” make the song particularly suited to the style of this duo.

It pays to remember that in 1975, there were not yet thousands of coffee shops, restaurants, airports and the like with some poor sap paid to sit on a stool plunking away at “Garota de Ipanema.” I sometimes feel empathy for these poor souls, unless they have decided to accompany themselves with a drum machine or sequencer, in which case I silently curse them and all of their offspring for seven generations. But I digress. Even without the official designation of this song to background restaurant dinner music (which, in fact, most likely had already occurred by 1975), there is just not a lot of room to make this song terribly interesting beyond the first, initial burst of recordings by singers and jazz-bossa combos. But Toquinho and Vinicius manage to give it a bit of a nudge back into relevance and remind us that we are, after all, listening to masters of the genre. Last but not least, the songs that Toquinho and Vinicius actually composed together are likely to lose place to their more famous brethren on this record, and there are only three selections out of fourteen songs represented here. But those three demonstrate that not only could they hold their own in the company of ‘the classics’ but that their partnership was really onto something during the first half of the 1970s. “Morena flor” featuring heavily their interwoven vocal harmonies; “Rosa desfolhada” is more of a solo vehicle for Toquinho and had heavy overtones of Chico; the penultimate track on the album “O velho e a flor” is one of the most interesting, as it also features Argentinian composer and arranger Luis Bacalov on the piano. (The casual between song banter becomes rather tongue-in-cheek here as Bacalov just *happens* to be hanging around the studio, and with a piano, to help them out…)

This album was recorded in Milan, Italy. As per the back cover:
“This album was recorded in 4 hours of studio time in Milan with the special participation of mestres Bacalov and Bardotti, in a climate of total distraction.”

 24bit

Vinicius & Toquinho / Toquinho & Vinicius (1974) 320kbs

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1 Como é duro trabalhar (Toquinho – Vinicius de Moraes)

2 Samba da volta (Toquinho – Vinicius de Moraes)

3 A carta que não foi mandada (Toquinho – Vinicius de Moraes)

4 Triste sertão (Toquinho – Vinicius de Moraes)

5 Carta ao Tom 74 (Toquinho – Vinicius de Moraes)

6 Canto e contraponto (Toquinho – Vinicius de Moraes)

7 Samba pra Vinicius (Chico Buarque – Toquinho)

8 Sem medo (Toquinho – Vinicius de Moraes)9 Samba do jato (Toquinho – Vinicius de Moraes)

10 As cores de abril (Toquinho – Vinicius de Moraes)

11 Tudo na mais santa paz (Toquinho – Vinicius de Moraes)

I hope this entry to Flabbergasted Vibes brings some joy to your weekend. This is a fantastic record from start to finish from a duo that could do no wrong during the early 70s. The album starts out with the best use of a Moog on a bossa nova song, Como é duro trabalhar. If you speak or read any Portuguese, the lyrics are as brilliant as you might expect from Vinicius de Moraes. “The Letter That Was Not Sent” is a fine example of piece that stands alone as poetry just fine, but comes alive with music. The two tracks I’ve included as samples are particular high points for me. “Triste Sertão” is some of the funkiest post-bossa nova you will ever hear, with a slightly-gritty Fender Rhodes jamming away under the fingers of who I suspect is João Donato. “The Colors of April” is one of those perfect compositions of Vinicius and Toquinho that tend to run through my head for hours and hours after hearing it. If there is anything annoying going on here, its that RGE tended to not credit musicians on many of these records. Aside of Donato, I can only guess at what other heavy-hitters are probably playing on these sessions. Definitely Chico Buarque is singing on his own composition with Toquinho, Samba pra Vinicius. Anyone who has more detailed information please leave a comment.