Master Composers: Joyce Brings Out True Passion With Music Inside

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“I was the first woman to act like a woman, talk like a woman and write like a woman in my songs.”

Born in Rio on January 31, 1948, Joyce Moreno (her given name) began her singing career by performing in clubs during her teenage years.  By 1967, she would be sharing a similar stage with legends like Milton Nascimento.

My pick of the week features the culmination of over two years of hard work.  The 1990 Polygram Records release not only was her first release in the Unites States, but it is a true definition of how Brazilian jazz can not only be relaxing, but her own words that she talked about in the liner notes, it summarized her craft well:
“I have a lot of fun when I sing, it’s really one of the greatest pleasures of life for me.  Singing is human, composing is divine.”

Like the vast Amazon rain forest, each region in Brazil has its’ own music vibes and traditions.  Joyce leads on a calm journey with mostly songs delving into the theme of happy sadness–with the Portuguese people naturally being more nostalgic while combined with other elements of African jazz, and it becomes more sensuous (hence, the term “happy sadness.”)

The most recognizable song in this part of the world is her English singing version on Track 7, “See You In Rio.”  I also enjoyed hearing “Bird of Brazil” on Track 2 and “Waiting For You” to close out the album.  There are also several Portuguese singing songs, namely on Track 4 titled, “Stonewashed (Blue Dreams) and her mellow version of Tracy Chapman’s memorable 1987 rock song, “Talkin’ Bout A Revolution.”

No doubt about it, after a career which spans 21 albums and writing several books–Joyce Silveira Moreno has definitely carved quite a path for current MPB’s to emulate and future female jazz artists in Brazil to follow.

The disk is widely available on Amazon, mostly from secondhand and third party sellers.  Excellent addition to anyone’s jazz collection.


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