After a longer than expected stay in the hospital,( lucky me I get to go back), my United States Postal Service greeted me with tidings of great joy namely with four releases including the latest release from Antonino Adolfo aptly title Finas Misturas ( fine mixtures). Those that roll with me in my musical mafia know and appreciates the samba and all the subtle nuances are guaranteed to make my musical back leg shake.
Adolfo combines his Brazilian heritage with a jazz career well in excess of forty years. The most interesting aspect of the samba is that they stereotypical more commercial version of the music is about as far off the mark as one can get. Depending upon the particular region of Brazil you are lucky enough to be spending time at, the version of sonic texture of the samba can and is very different and Finas Misturas works so well because the variety of the music is allowed to take the lead.
I've said a hundred times, jazz is a business first and an art form second. Adolfo has had music recorded by Stevie Wonder, Earl Klugh and Dionne Warwick to drop but a few names. The root of this release is to deceptively infuse Brazilian elements into some of the finest compositions while retaining artistic integrity the entire time. Far easier said than done.
John Coltrane's "Giant Steps" and "Naima" are included here and this would be a huge roll of the musical dice for lesser talent. The arrangements here back up what I stated earlier. "Giant Steps" is pulled from a Northeastern Brazilian Baiao derivation in 4/4/ called Quadrilha which opens up the harmonic structure and possibly intent on where Coltrane may have wanted to go with this piece. Naima is flipped into a more ambient Brazilian ballad. A tune where a sextet comes together as one voice. Marcello Martin's tenor sax is presented in such an organic fashion that one could confuse the metal with wood on an easy basis.
Adolfo is a leader of the sextet however there is no mistaking that he follows the music and allows the subtlety and elegance of his craft led the way down the harmonic road left untraveled. I had the honor of review Carol Saboya proving once again the apple does not fall far from the tree.
Tracks: Floresta Azul; Balada; Giant Steps; Con Alma; Misturando; Memories of Tomorrow; Naima; Tres Meminos; Crystal Silence; Time Remembered.
Personnal: Antonio Adolfo: piano; Leo Amuedo: electric guitar; Claudio Spiewak: Marcello Martins; Jorge Helder: double bass: Rafael Barata: drums and percussion.