Master Composers: Kleber Jorge brings the good times home
This artist may not have a bio on Wikipedia, but this Rio native comes from a family deep and rich in musical tradition.
According to the Moondo Records website, he was given his first guitar by the age of eight and would tour professionally in his teenage years. Jorge would later complete his degree in music theory at a prestigious music school in Rio.
By the mid 1980’s, Jorge left his homeland and began to tour the world:
He visited Miami, and also spent a month thereafter at Pari’s Palais de sport. He did return to Rio again in 1988, after spending several years of recording and performing in other parts of South America, he then relocated to Los Angeles to learn the tutelage of guitar master Ted Greene and arrangements by Moacir Santos.
My pick for the album of the week is from 1999, his first ever solo album.
The pace is very fast on the first pair of tracks, but we get to hear him sing a steady melody on Track 3, “Assim Nao Oa” (translated to, “It Doesn’t Work That Way”).
He gets into English singing “Camera” on Track 4, a nice romantic ballad, along with slower beats on “Cry for Joy” on Track 9 and a nice take on Kevyn Lattau’s hit song, “Underneath the Face of the Moon” on Track 11.
But another cool track is Number 6, “Nanas das Aguas” (or “Nana of the Waters”) and the neat chanting on Track 7, “Sem Parar” (or “Hanging There.”)
With Keith Jones on bass, Renato Neto on piano, Cassio Duarte on percussion, Kevin Winard on drums, and Larry Williams mastering the synthesizer–this was a nice mix of cool and tropical songs. Just right to unwind after surviving another Easter celebration for most people, especially that he named the last track after a once popular samba school in Brazil simply named “Manjueira.”
Another cool reason to buy the CD is that there are several recognizable images of Rio: Macarana Stadium and the statue of Christ the Redeemer are scattered throughout the liner notes, along with some key lyrics.
Kleber continues to perform throughout the Southern California area. So if you are lucky enough to brave the severe drought locations plaguing 98 percent of the state, hope you can go catch one of his shows.
Next week, with the income tax deadline creeping oh so closer for many Americans–I have just the album that ranks right up there with Jun Miyake, Amy Grant of 1990’s pop-rock fame and The Softies alternative rock group as the calmest music that it is so soothing to listen to, you midas well put on your headphones when you go to sleep and play Caibedo Island’s A Caibedo Tale ad nauseum.
See you all next week.
And please continue to pray for all the poor people of California having to cut their water usage by a minimum of 25 percent as the record drought conditions plaguing the state continue to persist. Sure hope they get the help they need soon.