Jan Garbarek – Bobo Stenson Quartet – Witchi-Tai-To (1974)

LPFrontCover1.jpgWitchi-Tai-To is an album by the Jan Garbarek-Bobo Stenson Quartet released on the ECM label and performed by Garbarek, Stenson, Palle Danielsson, and Jon Christensen.

Witchi-Tai-To is an album by the Jan Garbarek-Bobo Stenson Quartet released on the ECM label and performed by Garbarek, Stenson, Palle Danielsson, and Jon Christensen. This selection of composers Carla Bley, Jim Pepper, Don Cherry, Palle Danielsson, Carlos Puebla keep this fast and free indeed. Jan Garbarek has stepped up to deliver and has all his taste and styles loaded. Bobo Stenson always seams to shine in all surroundings, this session he sounds more Jarrett-est with that touch of Tyner added then ever before indeed Sophisticated Post Bop and Progressive. Plenty for your ears and one to have in any collection. (by Rick Ransom)

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Long before he became the standard-bearer for the “ECM sound,” churning out discs with a mildly medieval or Scandinavian flavor spiced with enough new age fluff to guarantee sales, Jan Garbarek produced a string of superb albums, culminating in Witchi-Tai-To, his masterpiece. Intriguingly, with the exception of Palle Danielsson’s “Kukka,” all of the pieces here are cover versions, largely culled from the then burgeoning Jazz Composers Orchestra catalog or related musicians. It opens with Carla Bley’s “A.I.R.,” an incredibly infectious melody heard on her Escalator Over the Hill. Garbarek’s soprano slithers sensuously around the theme, searching for and finding all manner of variations, while Stenson, a chameleon-like pianist who shows aspects of Jarrett, Tyner, and Alice Coltrane, makes all the right choices in support. Charlie Haden used the Carlos Puebla composition “Hasta Siempre” as a cornerstone for his Liberation Music Orchestra, and Garbarek rips into it with total romantic gusto; his tenor playing has never sounded more robust, muscular, or inspired. The title track by Jim Pepper is given a short but lovely reading,

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Garbarek withholding its gorgeous theme until the end of the piece, leaving the listener dying to hear more. Which is exactly what Don Cherry did on his Relativity Suite, where his supremely beautiful song “Desireless” lasted barely a minute. Here, it’s stretched out over the 20-minute mark, Garbarek summoning the spirit of John Coltrane and offering a stunning amount of indefatigable creativity. He might never have reached similar heights since, but Witchi-Tai-To, along with Dave Holland’s Conference of the Birds, is one of the two finest jazz albums that ECM ever released, and simply one of the very top jazz albums of the ’70s. /by Brian Olewnick)

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Personnel:
Jon Christensen (drums)
Palle Danielsson (bass)
Jan Garbarek (saxophone)
Bobo Stenson (piano)

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Tracklist:
01. A.I.R. (Bley) 8.20
02. Kukka (Danielsson) 4.38
03. Hasta Siempre (Puebla) 8.15
04. Witchi-Tai-To (Pepper) 4.27
05. Desireless (Cherry) 20.25

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Mr. Fox – Same (1970)

FrontCover1.jpgMr Fox were an early 1970s British folk rock band. They were seen as in the ‘second generation’ of British folk rock performers and for a time were compared with Steeleye Span and Sandy Denny’s Fotheringay. Unlike Steeleye Span they mainly wrote their own material in a traditional style and developed a distinct ‘northern’ variant of the genre. They demonstrate the impact and diversity of the British folk rock movement and the members went on to pursue significant careers within the folk rock and traditional music genres after they disbanded in 1972 having recording two highly regarded albums.

By the late 1960s Bob and Carole Pegg were already well-established singers and musicians on the British folk scene based in Yorkshire. In 1969 they moved south and played London folk clubs, where they met Ashley Hutchings, who had recently left Fairport Convention and was attempting to form a new group involving members of the Irish band Sweeney’s Men including Terry Woods. They took part in rehearsals but the embryonic band soon broke up and Hutchings went on to form Steeleye Span with Woods and his wife Gay. The Peggs were approached by record producer Bill Leader. He secured them a contract with Transatlantic Records. For their first album they recruited Alun Eden (drums), Barry Lyons (bass), Andrew Massey (cello) and John Myatt (woodwinds) and adopted the name Mr Fox, the title of one of their songs and a nod towards one of the recurring figures of folk lore.

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The group’s first eponymous album released in 1970, was in some ways very similar to the work of Steeleye Span, but, consisted largely of original compositions, mainly by the Peggs, with a Dave Mason tune, ‘Little Woman,’ and the songs ‘Salisbury Plain’ and ‘Mr Trill’s Song’ with lyrics by Hutchings. The use of classically trained musicians and the wide variety of instruments used (including organ, melodeon, tin whistle, terrapin, fiddle, cello, flute, clarinet) made for very complex arrangements and sounds. It was well received by the music press and was made Melody Maker album of the year.[4]

Massey and Myatt left soon after the first album and the second, The Gipsy (1971), as a result, had less complex instrumentation, but more experimentation.[3] A more varied album than the first offering, it was also based around self-penned material, but included two traditional songs ‘The House Carpenter’ and the finale ‘All the Good Times’ on which the Gridley Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra guested.
Break-up and after

Single.jpgThe band had a reputation as an unpredictable live act, sometimes startlingly good and sometimes lacklustre. At the Loughborough Folk Festival in 1971 they were on the same bill as Steeleye Span and, while the latter put in a memorable performance, Mr Fox were on bad form and the band was heavily criticised in the press, an event often seen as a turning point in the band’s fortunes. Recordings made by the couple before the group was formed were released as He Came from the Mountain (1971), but by this point the Peggs’ marriage was already under strain. In 1972 Eden and Lyons quit to join Trees, and were replaced by guitarist Nick Strutt and Ritchie Bull on bass. When Carole left later that year the band dissolved.

Carole (as Carolanne Pegg) recorded an eponymous solo album in 1973, and briefly joined the band Magus before moving on to become a respected ethnomusicologist. Recordings of songs by Sydney Carter made by the Peggs before the band were formed were released as And Now it is So Early in 1973. Bob Pegg recorded two albums with Nick Strutt: Bob Pegg and Nick Strutt (1973) and The Shipbuilder (1974). He then made a solo album Ancient Maps (1975), before moving on to become an author, oral historian and entering theatre education. The band’s two albums were released as a double album set on vinyl in 1975 and on CD in 2004.

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Despite the comparisons with Steeleye Span, Mr Fox had a very distinctive style from contemporaneous British folk rock bands. They did not rely on electric guitars, but did use drums. They also used a very wide range of instruments, prefiguring some of the developments that would be undertaken by The Albion Band and Home Service. Carole Pegg had an unusual fiddle style, quite unlike Fairport’s Dave Swarbrick or Steeleye Span’s Peter Knight, based partly on what she had learnt from older Yorkshire fiddle players. They also used more complex, perhaps more staid, classical arrangements for their songs, leading one critic to note that their songs sounded, ‘as if they had been penned by Bartok’.

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The distinctive feature of their music was the dominance of self-penned songs drawing on the atmosphere and folklore of the Yorkshire Dales, often, like ‘The Hanged Man’ (the story of a lost fell walker coming to grief), sounding like modern day Child Ballads. One thing they lacked was an outstanding singer like Maddy Prior or Sandy Denny, with Carole Pegg’s vocals usually being perceived as eerie or atmospheric in their best moments, so much so that they have been described as ‘psychedelic’ (by wikipedia)

Mr. Fox was a septet formed in 1970 and started out with a self-titled debut album on Transatlantic that generated a massive amount of enthusiasm and controversy, over their mix of traditional folk forms and experimental touches in the rhythms and other embellishments. They were serious rivals to acts like Steeleye Span for a time.

Such a great album from the early days of British Folk ! Enjoy all the fine melodies and lyrics !

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Personnel:
Alun Eden (drums)
Barry Lyons (bass)
Andrew Massey (cello)
John Myatt (flute, clarinet, bassoon)
Bob Pegg (vocals, organ, melodeon, tin whistle, synstesizer)
Carole Pegg (vocals, fiddle)

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Tracklist:
01. Join Us In Our Game (B.Pegg/C.Pegg) 2.58
02. The Hanged Man (B.Pegg) 4.19
03. The Gay Goshawk (C.Pegg) 3.20
04. Rip Van Winkle (B.Pegg) 4.28
05. Mr. Trills Song (Hutchings) 2.56
06. Little Woman (Mason) 2.37
07. Salisbury Plain (B.Pegg/Hutchings) 5.22
08. The Ballad Of Neddy Dick (B.Pegg)
09. Leaving The Dales (B.Pegg) 3.36
10. Mr. Fox (B.Pegg) 4.40
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11. Mendle (C.Pegg) 7.12

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I got this rare item from Mr. Sleeve — and I had to say thanks again !

Red Snapper – Reeled & Skinned (1995)

LPFrontCover1Red Snapper are notable for a pioneering and evolving synthesis of acoustic and electronic sounds that has drawn from avant-garde jazz, funk, dub, post-punk, and hip-hop. Guitarist David Ayers, double bassist Ali Friend, and drummer Richard Thair formed the London-based band in 1994, the year they released their first two EPs, both of which featured Beth Orton as the first of several vocal collaborators. After a third EP, it and the preceding releases were licensed to Warp, which compiled them as Reeled & Skinned (1995). Warp remained Red Snapper’s home for the proper albums Prince Blimey (1996), Making Bones (1998), and Our Aim Is to Satisfy Red Snapper (2000), a period during which the group also thrived as a live act and supported Björk and Massive Attack, among several other artists. After the trio devoted time to separate projects, they returned on Lo Recordings with Red Snapper (2003), a collection of previously unreleased and live material, and Redone (also 2003), a remix set. Performances and outside activities resumed during the ensuing years as Red Snapper recorded less frequently, documented on A Pale Blue Dot (Lo, 2008) and Key (V2, 2011).

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The group subsequently toured with a reissued print of the ’70s Senegalese road movie Touki Bouki, a film that enabled a deeper exploration of Afrobeat — one of their enduring inspirations — and formed the basis of Hyena (Lo, 2014). (by by Jason Ankeny)
I got this album, after getting Making Bones and Our Aim Is To Satisfy Red Snapper. I love the acid jazz style of Red Snapper, and the fact that they use live bass and drums. But I was expecting bland techno from this, their first album, but I still had to give it a try. I was very pleasently surprised.
One thing that Making Bones was noted for was its acid jazz roots. Many people argued this saying that “Just because they blow a couple of trombones doesn’t make them acid jazz”. While this is true, they obviosuly haven’t heard Reeled And Skinned. This album shows off the time when Red Snapper was a jazz band, not a techno band. All of the songs have DEEP double bass, excellent drumming, and usually some type of brass. This will definatly satisfy many fans who liked the minor jazz elements in Making Bones.
Most of the songs are instrumental, and MC Det had not yet joined the crew. Beth Orton privides vocals on two tracks.

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The song “In Deep” displays her talent as a singer/songwriter, showing off her strong and deep voice; it almost sounds like a song off of a James Bond movie. I would have loved some raps from MC Det to help fight off the usual repetitiveness of some instrumentals, but those instances are very rare. The songs remain fresh, throwing in new rhythms and instruments at every turn.
Fans of Making Bones will immeadiatly recongnize the tune from The Sleepless as “Snapper” – but the song has been majorly changed. MC Det obviously does not appear, but Beth Orton does show up with some background vocals. There is some excellent layed back horn playing on this track.
Every single track is excellent, and it would take too long to go into detail about each one. Lobster is a great way to finish the album, which is a long and beautiful track featuring flutes, horns, and wonderful bass. It is a great way to finish the album.
This first cut by Red Snapper demonstrates their ability as a true acid jazz group. This was before they really discovered what electronic music was, and just about everything is a live instrument. If you need to convince someone that Red Snapper is truly acid jazz, play this album for them. Making Bones is merely a transfusion of electronic music and this style of music.
I can’t reccommend this one enough. (by Robby Raeford)

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Personnel:
David Ayers (guitar)
Ali Friend (bass)
Allan Riding (saxophone, flute, melodica)
Richard Thair (drums)
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Beth Orton (vocals on 01. + 07.)

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Tracklist:
01. Snapper 4.48
02. One Legged Low Frequency Guy 5.31
03. Swank 6.16
04. Hot Flush 4.10
05. Cortina 5.08
06. Hot Flush (Sabres Of Paradise Remix) 8.05
07. In Deep 9.28
08. Wesley Don’t Surf 5.00
09. Lobster 10.37

Music composed by David Ayers – Ali Friend – Allan Riding – Richard Thair
except 07. which was co-written by Beth Orton

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NRBQ – Same (1969)

LPFrontCover1.jpgNRBQ is an American rock band founded in 1966. It is known for its live performances, containing a high degree of spontaneity and levity, and blending rock, pop, jazz, blues and Tin Pan Alley styles. Its current membership comprises the quartet of pianist Terry Adams, bassist Casey McDonough, guitarist Scott Ligon and drummer John Perrin. Some of the most notable members in the band’s long history are bassist Joey Spampinato; guitarists Al Anderson, Steve Ferguson, and Johnny Spampinato; and drummer Tom Ardolino.

The abbreviation “NRBQ” stands for New Rhythm and Blues Quartet (originally Quintet). (by wikipedia)

NRBQ have evolved considerably over the course of a career that’s lasted over 50 years and isn’t done just yet. But the band’s self-titled debut album, originally released in 1969, is joyous evidence that their originality and spark were there right from the very start. Cut several years before NRBQ settled into their “classic” lineup, here founders Terry Adams (keyboards and vocals) and Joey Spampinato (bass and vocals) are joined by lead singer Frank Gadler, guitarist Steve Ferguson, and drummer Tom Staley. Gadler and Ferguson’s musical personalities put a different spin on this music than NRBQ would generate a few years down the line, when Al Anderson’s guitar work and songwriting would become a key part of their recipe. Here, they sound more like a boogie band than they did when they hit their stride, albeit one with a very individual approach. But the group’s trademark eclecticism and sense of fun are very much in evidence.

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The album’s opening one-two punch of Q-approved reworkings of Eddie Cochran’s “C’mon Everybody” and Sun Ra’s “Rocket #9” demonstrate both their musical reach and the depth of their influences, Adams’ crazy-quilt melodic ideas and inspired keyboard work are featured on “Kentucky Slop Song” and “Stay with We,” Spampinato contributes a first-class rocker in “You Can’t Hide” (NRBQ would revisit the song on 1980’s Tiddlywinks), and Steve Ferguson’s estimable guitar work and songwriting bona fides (“I Didn’t Know Myself,” “Stomp,” and “Fergie’s Prayer”) are a reminder of what a potent force he was in the band’s early days. NRBQ is the work of a band that sometimes sounds like it’s still finding its way in the recording studio, and Eddie Kramer’s production sometimes lacks the punch the musicians needed. But even though NRBQ would make better albums in the future, their debut is the work of a group that already had a sound all its own and a love of music that was wildly infectious, and this is an often overlooked gem in the Q’s catalog. (by Mark Deming)

On one LP … songs by Eddie Cochran, Brownie McGhee & Sonny Terry,  Sun Ra & Carla Bley !!!

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Personnel:
Terry Adams (keyboards, harmonica, recorder, vocals)
Steve Ferguson (guitar, vocals)
Frank Gadler (vocals, percussion)
Jody St. Nicholas (bass)
G.T. Staley (drums, percussion)
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Donn Adams (trombone on 02., 03. + 06.)

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Tracklist:
01. C’mon Everybody (Cochran/Capehart) 3.06
02. Rocket Number 9 (Sun Ra) 3.06
03. Kentucky Slop Song (Adams) 5.45
04. Ida (Bley/Adams) 1.56
05. C’mon If You’re Comin’ (McGhee/Terry) 2.34
06. You Can’t Hide (Nicholas) 1.56
07. I Didn’t Know Myself (Ferguson) 2.17
08. Stomp (Ferguson) 2.00
09. Fergie’s Prayer (Ferguson) 2.38
10. Mama Get Down Those Rock And Roll Shoes (Adams) 2.37
11. Hymn Number 5 (Adams) 1.09
12. Hey! Baby (Channel/Cobb) 3.23
13. Liza Jane (P. D.) 1.02
14. Stay With Me (Adams) 3.52

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Gergley Sarközy – Bach Suites For Lute & Harpsichord (1985)

LPFrontCover1.jpgGergely Sárközy is a Hungarian musician who plays guitar, lute, lute-harpsichord, viola bastarda, and organ. He has produced numerous recordings and has helped in the creation of animated film soundtracks including that of A nyár szemei (“The Eyes of Summer”) for which he won an Award for Best Sound Engineering together with Nikolai Ivanov Neikov at the 4th Kecskemét Animation Film Festival (by wikipedia)

Gergely Sárközy is a master of several instruments and an amateur instrument maker. He studied composition at a specialized secondary school of music and graduated from the Cello Department of the Academy of Music with a diploma for viola da gamba and cello.

Gergely Sárközy has featured on several recordings, playing medieval troubadour music with his ensemble “Fraternitas Musicorum”, Baroque chamber music, and as a member of “Camerata Hungarica”, Renaissance music. He also contributed to the records of the Bálint Bakfark Lute Trio and the Kalaka Ensemble, and performed four of Bach’s lute works on his first performer’s record, released in 1981.

His main instruments are the harpsichord, organ, cello, viola da gamba, rebec, various types of lute, koboz, classical and flamenco guitar, psaltery, bagpipe, gemshorn, Jew’s harp, xylophone and other percussion instruments. He considers that a complex variety of activities, styles and instruments results in useful cross-fertilizations that assist him in his work.

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This isn’t your average Bach recording. The lute harpsichord uses gut strings rather than wire, it has a 16 ft 2×8 and 1×4. You might thus find the sound “dull” in comparison to standard stringing. The playing is exquisite.  It is beautifully played although some might say that the embellishment obscures the lines of the lute suites. Not me. (Joseph Alfano)

Johann Sebastian Bach (31 March, 1685 – 28 July 1750) was a German composer, organist, harpsichordist, violist, and violinist of the Baroque Period. His music is revered for its intellectual depth, technical command, and artistic beauty.

The lautenwerck (also spelled lautenwerk), or lute-harpsichord (lute-clavier), was a European keyboard instrument of the Baroque period. It was similar to a harpsichord, but with gut rather than metal strings, producing a mellow tone; one of Bach’s favorite keyboard instruments, which is now almost impossible to hear on record. It’s truly wonderful, with a deep, rich and resonant sound. No wonder Bach had one custom-built to his own specifications. He owned two of the instruments at the time of his death, but no specimens have survived to the present day. It was revived in the 20th century and two of its most prominent performers are the early music specialists Gergely Sárközy and Robert Hill.

This is indeed a very unique piece of music … Enjoy it !

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Personnel:
Gergley Sarközy (harpsichord, lute, lute-harpsichord)

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Tracklist:

Suite In E Minor:
01. Praeludio – Passagio – Presto 2.37
02. Allemande 2.54
03. Courante 3.02
04. Sarabande 5.19
05. Bourree 1.51
06. Gigue] 2.45

Choral Preludes From The Kirnberg Collection. ” Wer nur den lieben Gott lasst walten”:
07. BWV 690 (B) 2.03
08. BWV 691 1.51
09. BWV 690 (A) 2.07

Suite In C Minor:
10. Prelude 3.34
11. Fuga 10.55
12. Sarabande 4.27
13. Gigue 3.45
14. Double 2.10

Music composed by Johann Sebastian Bach

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The Lute-Harpsichord was  one of Bach’s favourite keyboard instruments
which is now almost impossible to hear on record.
It’s a truly wonderful instrument with a deep, rich and resonant sound.
No wonder Bach had one custom-built to his own specifications.

Miúcha & Antonio Carlos Jobim – Same (1977)

FrontCover1.jpgHeloísa Maria Buarque de Hollanda (30 November 1937 – 27 December 2018), whose artistic name is Miúcha, was a Brazilian singer and composer.

Heloisa Maria Buarque de Hollanda was born in Rio de Janeiro. She was the daughter of historian Sérgio Buarque de Holanda and Maria Amélia Cesário Alvim; she had a brother, singer and composer Chico Buarque and two sisters, the singers Ana de Hollanda and Cristina.

When she was 8 years old her family moved to São Paulo. As a child she formed a vocal ensemble with her brothers, including Chico Buarque. In 1960 she moved to Paris where she studied Art History at the École du Louvre.

In 1975 she made her first professional recording as a singer on the album The Best of Two Worlds in partnership with João Gilberto and Stan Getz. After this release, Miúcha partnered with Tom Jobim on two albums, 1977 and 1979, and was part of the show organized by Aloysio de Oliveira along with Vinicius de Moraes, Tom Jobim and Toquinho. The act was shown for a year at Canecão in Rio de Janeiro, followed for Miúcha01.jpginternational presentations in South America and Europe, and gave origin to the recording Tom, Vinícius, Toquinho e Miúcha recorded live in Canecão (RCA Victor, 1977)

In 1963 Miúcha made a holiday trip with friends to Greece, Italy and France. In Rome, in the bar La Candelaria, she met the Chilean singer Violeta Parra, through whom she met singer João Gilberto. Miúcha and Gilberto got married in 1965 and had a daughter, Bebel Gilberto, in 1966.

Miúcha died on 27 December 2018, in Rio de Janeiro, at the age of 81. (by wikipedia)

The sweet voice, exemplary interpreter of the Brazilian song, sister of the singer and writer Chico Buarque, was a muse of bossa-nova, an important emerging musical revolution in Rio at the end of the 1950s. (by http://www.archynewsy.com)

And heré as a tribute to the great Miúcha one of her firstalbums, recorded together with the one and only Antonio Carlos Jobim:

In 1977 the best selling album Miúcha e Antonio Carlos Jobim was released and the unforgettable musical encounter Tom, Vinicius, Toquinho e Miúcha was staged for almost one year at Canecão in Rio and toured many South American and European cities. The live record of the show is a landmark in the Brazilian music history. (by showbras.com.br)

Enjoy the wonderful world of Bossa Nova !

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Personnel:
Luís Alves (bass)
Chico Buarque (vocals)
Danilo Caymmi (flute)
Dori Caymmi (guitar)
Ariovaldo Contesini (percussion)
Wilson DasNeves (drums)
Peter Dauelsberg (cello)
Franklin (flute)
Antônio CarlosJobim (piano, flute, vocals)
Paulo Jobim (flute)
Edson Lobo (bass)
Miúcha Coro (vocals)
Novelli (bass)
Rubinho (drums)
Robertinho Silva (drums)

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Tracklist:
01. Vai Levando (Buarque/Veloso) 3.19
02. Tiro Cruzado (Borges) 2.09
03. Comigo É Assim (Bittencourt/Menezes) 3.13
04. Na Batucada da Vida (Barroso/Peixoto) 2.50
05. Sei Lá (de Moraes/Toquinho) 2.32
06. Olhos Nos Olhos (Buarque) 4.10
07. Pela Luz Dos Olhos Teus (de Moraes) 2.45
08. Samba Do Avião (Jobim) 2.50
09. Saia Do Caminho (Mesquita) 4.08
10. Maninha (Buarque) 2.42
11. Choro de Nada (Carneiro) 2.40
12. É Preciso Dizer Adeus (Jobim(de Moraes) 2.06

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Heloísa Maria Buarque de Hollanda (30 November 1937 – 27 December 2018)