Rocco Reviews… October 18, 2018


…Rosalia De Souza – Tempo

NAU Records

Tempo is the latest release from Brazilian-born, Italian-based singer Rosalia De Souza.

De Souza, who hails from the city of Nilopolis (home of renowned samba school Beija Flor) in Rio de Janeiro state, De Souza moved to Italy in the late 1980s, where, encouraged by friends, she studied singing. Having worked on some projects with groups such as Les Hommes and Quintetto X, It was around 1994-95 that De Souza met Bari-based musician, music producer, dj and bandleader Nicola Conte. The two collaborated on her first release, 2002’s Garota Moderna. Conte produced the album adding his magic touch – a mix of acid jazz, electronica and bossa beats – to help create a stunning solo debut for the budding carioca singer.

In 2006, De Souza would then release her second album – Brasil Precisa Balançar (Brazil needs to swing). On this album, De Souza returns to Rio de Janeiro and her bossa roots. Produced and arranged by bossa nova great Roberto Menescal (O Barquinho),  the album features Brazilian artists such as Toco and the legendary Marcos Valle.

2009 De Souza released D’Improvviso (Suddenly). Produced by Luciano Cartone (producer of internationally-successful release Mario Biondi’s Handful Of Soul) Featuring compositions by greats such as Valle, Aldemaro Romero, Dory Caymmi and Carlos Lyra the album also features some original compositions as well as a return to the “nu-bossa” sound of Garota Moderna.

Rosalia De Souza. Photo by Paolo Callipari

Her latest release, Tempo, is almost exclusively original collaborations except for Chico Buarque’s O Que Será (What will be).

Backed by a talented quartet featuring Antonio de Luise, piano; Sandro Deidda, flute/tenor saxophone/piccolo; Aldo Vigorito, double bass; and Dario Congedo, drums De Souza, who wrote most of the lyrics on this album, starts off with Io e Te (Me and You). A spoken-word meditation on the bond, the oneness between two people. The opening words:

I am your sky, the creative and the creator of your dreams, your shelter, the rain that cleanses you from each sadness, the blue that blends sea and horizon on the days when your eyes need not see beyond what is vital.

The tempo takes an upbeat turn on the next track – Não Tem Mais Carnaval (No More Carnival). There is no more carnival, for love knows no rival…

Switching between Portuguese and Italian, the music, like De Souza’s previous works with bossa and jazz, are beautifully crafted. From Só Para Você (Just For You), A Tela (Until Then) to Vivi in Me (Live in Me), Tropical and Chovendo No Molhado (Around in Circles).

Tempo is available on cd and digitally from most online stores.


…Bebo Best & The Super Lounge Orchestra – Swingin’ Bossa


ChinChin Records

Swingin’ Bossa is the eighth release from Bebo Best & The Super Lounge Orchestra.

Bebo Baldan who hails from Venice, Italy but now based in Tenerife, Spain, studied music at the world renowned Teatro La Fenice in Venice. Influenced by many different music genres and artists such as Frank Zappa, Weather Report, Antonio Carlos Jobim and James Brown amongst others, Bebo Best & The Super Lounge Orchestra is a group formed of his best musician friends with whom he has worked for years, creating a musical family of sorts.

The Family:

Guitars: Renus Greco , Robertinho De Paula

Piano & Organ: Ivan Zuccarato, Paolo Vianello

All Trumpets: Mauri Scompabop

All Saxophones And Flutes: Henry Pagnin

Vibraphone: Bebo Best, Luca Ventimiglia.

Bass & Drumming & Grooves, Noises, Percussion, Whistle,  Guitars, Keybds, Piano, Hammond, Vibes: B.B.

Congas: Matteo Toso, Bongos: Alejandro Garcia Hernandez

Tres: Mastermauri 

Portuguese Vocals: Carlita Martorana All Vocals.  Rosa Bittolo Bon (Agua De Beber)

Spanish Vocals: Fernando Jimenez Hidalgo (Minha Alma Canta)

Vocal Effects: Mirta Magnoler (Gegè), Louis Chirillo (Chirillo Badabim)

His passion for different styles is reflected in the music, which can be a mix of pop, lounge, jazz with Brazilian, Indian and American influences.  Albums such as Sitar and Bossa, D’Jazzonga, Saronno On the Rocks, Mambossa, Trip to Rio de Janeiro and  Jazz Mamba.

His new album, Swingin’ Bossa is more cool nu jazz vibes, once again spiced with many different flavors.  From tripping the lounge fantastic with tunes such as Honolulu 71, Sun By the Pool, Cocktail Loopa and A Jazzy Latin Night to bossa-flavored trips like The Swingin’ Bossa, Angurie Bossa, Jazz Samba Promenade as well as Jobim classics such as swingin’ versions of One Note Samba and Agua de Beber.

Pop is also given its due. The album includes a nice cover of the classic 80’s hit, Walking On Sunshine. 

In addition Swingin’ Bossa pays tribute to mambo and the Prez – Perez Prado – with the lovely Calypso & Soda featuring the Cuban tres played by Maurizio Tiozzi.

And in another mambo-esque journey, the jumping Chirillo Badabim, where this reviewer was surprised and honored to hear his voice and see his name in this fun romp. I’ve had the pleasure of making videos for Bebo, and was truly blown away by this gift.

14 tracks in all and like all the other albums in his catalog, an enjoyable journey into the land of jazz, bossa, swing, pop, lounge, mambo and much more.

…Miriam Netti –  La Bossa

Timezone Records

A few weeks ago, through a Facebook page dedicated to music from around the world (Music of All the World) I was introduced to Berlin-based artist, Miriam Netti. Originally from Bari, Italy Netti’s repertoire covers pop, jazz and bossa nova. Her voice, at times smooth and sweet, other times strong and powerful.

La Bossa is her second album, released in 2016, and features some wonderfully reworked pop/jazz/bossa classics such as Madelena and Begin Again by the legendary composer Ivan Lins; Incompatibility of Geniuses by João Bosco; Details by the great Roberto Carlos and October by Paulo Moura.  Netti also performs a nice cover of Betty Carter’s Open the Door (Apri La Porta) as well as the 1968 hit by O.C. Smith, composed by Bobby Russell,  Little Green Apples (Piccole Mele Verdi).

With an excellent combo featuring Bruno Castellucci, drums; Johan Leijonhufvud , guitar; Christoph Adams, piano, rhodes, hammond; and Lars Gühlcke, doublebass, La Bossa also includes some classic Italian compositions such as a beautiful bossa rendition of La Più Bella del Mondo by Marino Marini;  a sweet jazz take on Luigi Tenco’s Lontano Lontano (featuring a nice Guaraldi-esque piano solo by Adams) and the sultry, romantic Love In Portofino by Fred Buscaglione. (beautiful doublebass by Gühlcke here)

Along with the varied selection on this album, La Bossa also offers some original gems. Neruda, composed by Netti herself, featuring a smooth guitar performance by Leijonhufvud as well as Netti’s powerful vocal performance. There are also two wonderful compositions by multi-talented, Bremen-born artist, Christian von der Goltz. The cool, swingin’ Diva  (nice work on the Hammond organ by Adams) and the easy, Un Disco. Both of von der Goltz’ pieces complimenting Netti’s flexible vocal style.