Everyone Loves Brazil
Notes on Brazilliance Okay, first of all, let's set the record straight. I am not Brazilian. I am a white guy from Vermont who grew up in New Jersey. I did travel to Brazil for two months in 1987 with my wife, Marjorie Pivar and stepson Jovi (who is half-Brazilian by Margie's first husband, Herculano Federici). That year in Salvador, Bahia I experienced the joyous anarchy of Carnaval in all of it's overwhelming splendor. A life-changing experience to be sure and one that I highly recommend to anyone who has the burning desire to witness a huge, nearly out of control and totally outrageous party. Long before that trip and for many years I have been listening to and loving Brazilian composers, particularly Antonio Carlos Jobim, Vinicius de Moraes, Milton Nascimento (originally on Wayne Shorter's "Native Dancer") and Chico Buarque. Later I came to appreciate many others including Djavan, Ary Barroso and Egberto Gismonte as well as great singers like Elis Regina, Simone and Gao Costa. One of my earliest memories of Brazilian influenced music was probably the soundtrack to the French film "A Man And A Woman" by Francis Lai, which my father played incessantly in the late 60's. So who am I, a white guy from Vermont to say that this is Brazilian music? What gives me the right? It is simply this: it's my opinion that if you love something - really and truly love it, then it becomes yours. I deeply love Brazilian music and so I have made it my own by writing these songs and compositions over the span of 27 years (1976-2003). There are probably a few Brazilians out there who would object to me calling these songs Brazilian. In truth, they would be right. These songs are American because I'm an American. It is not my intention to offend these Brazilian traditionalists. My goal is only to praise and to attempt to reflect the beauty, elegance and artfulness of Brazilian music with my own creations. This double CD has been a way for me to bring all of this material together under one roof and recording it has taken over two and a half years. Brazilliance - 26 original songs - 16 with lyrics and 10 instrumentals - composed by Derrik Jordan (with the assistance of a few fabulous co-writers!) is a collection of songs written in the classic Brazilian styles of samba and bossa nova. These are my own versions of what I love most about Brazilian music. This recording is not an attempt to update the form, but rather it is a return to the classic and timeless sound made world-famous by Stan Getz and Joao Gilberto (Getz/Gilberto featuring Antonio Carlos Jobim - Verve 1963) with their indelible "The Girl From Ipanema." "Everyone Loves Brazil" don't they? What is it about Brazilian music that attracts people so irresistibly? I personally feel that what makes Brazilian music so compelling is that it brings together the three most important aspects of music in a highly evolved way. First, Brazilian music has melodies both intricately subtle and joyously soaring. Secondly, it contains profound harmonic invention that's as deep as the best jazz and finally, Brazilian music employs passionate, syncopated rhythms that use a wide variety of percussion. In short, Brazilian music has it all. And then there is this unmistakable quality in Brazilian music that's a bit harder to define. I think I first noticed it when I was 9 years old in the melody of The Beatles' song "And I Love Her" undoubtedly inspired by Brazilian bossa nova master Antonio Carlos Jobim. Brazilians have a word for this feeling - "saudade" - loosely translated as "a deep longing." It is this mysterious quality that is inherent in Brazilian music and lyrics - love, experience, loss, joy, the highs and lows of life, fun, sadness and above all the passion that runs through them all. This spirit reminds me of some lines from a very old poem by William Blake "Joy and woe are woven fine /A clothing for the soul divine / Under every grief and pine / Runs a joy with silken twine." For me that really captures the bittersweet essence of Brazilian music where just below joy's surface sadness lurks and vice versa. There are two songs in this collection ("Por Um Beijo Seu" and "Everyone Loves Brazil") that have lyrics in Portuguese. A lot of people would agree with me that Brazilian Portuguese is one of the most sensual, seductive and beautiful singing languages in the world. In spite that sonic sumptuousness, it has been my goal to capture the feeling of Brazilian lyrics in English so these songs would be accessible to English speakers. Most of the songs on this double CD have never been recorded or performed before with a few notable exceptions. Other than those few songs, it's all "new" material that has been languishing for decades, existing only in my music notebooks and in my mind. This recording is my way of breathing some life into these songs, to liberate them at last from those dusty pages and let them out into the sunshine. ...quot;Derrik Jordan Putney, VT September 2005 ************** All of the music on these CDs is collected in a companion book of charts and lyrics (with guitar voicings and Bb charts for horns) called The Brazilliance Songbook and is available by sending $20 to PO Box 403, Putney, VT 05346. Derrik Jordan's other CDs (Touch The Earth, Expecting A Miracle and SuperString Theory) are also available online at CDBaby.com, where you can listen to, read about and buy music from over 100,000 independent recording artists and bands. Think globally, listen locally Support independent music!