Sergio Mendes - The Swinger From Rio
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Atlantic SD 1434

Maria Moita
Sambinha Bossa Nova
Batida Diferente
So Danco Samba
Pau Brazil
The Girl From Ipanema

Useless Panorama
The Dreamer

We have become more familiar with the music of Latin America and especially that
of Brazil in the past year. The new music from Brazil (better known as bossa nova)
has been absorbed into the mainstream of our own music. This is completely natural.
While we have been listening to their music, Latin American musicians have been
listening to ours. Jazz music in particular has been fascinating to them for quite some
time, and it would be accurate to describe bossa nova as a marriage of modern
Brazilian music and American jazz. The music contained in this album is the happy
result of a meeting of Brazilian bossa nova stars and American jazz musicians.

Sergio Mendes, the young man who graces the cover of this LP is one of the
brightest talents to emerge from Brazilian music circles. He possesses a crisp piano
style that clearly dominates all of the performances in this album. The clarity of
Sergio's musical thought is always apparent whether he is soloing, playing ensemble
or accompanying someone else's solo. In addition he inspires some of the finest work
on records by the well known jazz performers, Art Farmer, Phil Woods and Hubert

Sergio is accustomed to playing with a country's leading musicians. He became a
professional pianist at the age of sixteen. One year later he organized his own group
to perform at parties and in night clubs in and around his hometown of Niteroi which is
across the bay from the more celebrated Brazilian town of Ipanema. The composer
and musician, Antonio Carlos Jobim, heard Sergio play and was very impressed. He
gave him a great nea'fof encouragement, arid before long Sergio joined the circle of
musicians in Rio who were creating a new musical style that came to be known as
bossa nova.

It is impossible to conceive of greater musical understanding than that which is shown
by Sergio, fluegelhornist Art Farmer, saxophonist Phil Woods and flutist Hubert Laws
in this album. Listening to the way their solos dovetail one could easily assume these
musicians have worked together for many years. Sergio has the remarkable facility of
matching the tonal quality of his instrument to that of the musician with whom he is
playing. Notice for instance that when he and Art Farmer exchange phrases at the end
of Useless Panorama, the sound of their instruments maintain an even flow. On So
Danco Samba
and Maria Moita there is a little more bite to Sergio's piano work to match
the drive of Phil Woods' robust saxophone style. Though these musicians may have
been born thousands of miles apart, they are truly kindred spirits.

Sergio's good friend and the man he calls his mentor. Antonio Carlos Jobim, is on hand
for many of the numbers. Better known as the composer of the classic bossa nova
tunes (Desafinado, One Note Samba, etc.), Jobim is also an accomplished guitarist.
Hear how he introduced his composition, Useless Panorama by softly phrasing the
melody. The musicians who make up the rhythm section are members of Sergio's own
trio, Tiao Netto on bass and drummer Chico DeSouza. They keep the front line swinging
in all tempos.

Geographically Sergio Mendes may be The Swinger From Rio—on the basis of his
playing in this album he could also be The Swinger From The USA.


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