Artists Worth Checking Out: Marcos Ariel keeps the hits coming


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The career of Marcos Ariel has had many hit songs and albums:

For a quarter century, since the release of Zil, his keyboard and piano have mesmerized even the most curious of audiences.  By the 1990’s, albums like Terra do Indio, Rhapsody in Rio, Hand Dance, and Soul Song filled a major void and introduced Americans to a form of Brazilian jazz similar to the New Wave jazz that dominated radio airplay in Los Angeles and Chicago during the late 1980’s/very early 1990’s.

The album I chose this week crosses many paths–but especially on the song, “Green Eyes”.  On June 22, 1999 when the album was released, Daniella Carlo begins with two soulful lyric renditions of “Girl from Ipanema” and the aforementioned hit single.

Ricardo Silveira (a future blog subject) blends in on guitar on the title track, while some snazzy rhythms on percussion combined with drums on “Bahia Suite” rounds out the steady 12 tracks of world fusion at its’ best.

SPECIAL NOTE:  Today marks a special anniversary in Brazilian jazz history.  On July 10, 1958–after spending eight months in private exile after empty promises on the Rio bar scene of the period–one guitar, one voice would spawn Bossa Nova as a movement, a vehicle, and would bring distinct and sometimes harrowing sounds.

That man was Joao Gilberto, and the song “Chega de Saudade” with Antonio Carlos Jobim heading up the record label would spawn more hits and bring with it some truly deep feelings that sometimes conjure up silent moments of staring at a Michelangelo painting or listening to a J.S. Bach or Beethoven symphony in its’ purest form.

That will be one of a handful of songs I will attempt to highlight next week.

And with the Gilberto family being the First Family of Brazilian jazz, they should all be remembered in a similar breath that Louis Armstrong gave to jazz and Elvis Presley gave instant credibility to rock and roll.

I am sure Bebel is smiling somewhere today.  So glad she is keeping the tradition alive well into the 21st century.

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