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Nana Vasconcelos
Brazilian Jazz & Instrumental Music

Minha Loa

Minha Loa

When Nana Left the State of Pernambuco, his Teary-eyed Mother Said: "You Won’t Come Back...". He Did... Twenty-six years later. After recording around the World, Nana, a Legendary Percussionist, Has Decided to Put on Record his Beloved City of Recife. --album description

More Nana Vasconcelos Albums

Codona 1
with Don Cherry and Collin Walcott

Codona 2
with Don Cherry and Collin Walcott

This was the first Codona CD I have heard, and I much prefer it to Codona 3. It seems earthier, more delicate...extremely gorgeous, but still "out" enough to maintain interest (i.e. the jagged sporadic running lines Cherry lays over the mellow grooves...somehow all out and completely restrained). WhenI first heard this album, I listened through it twice in a row, and for days afterwards. I have yet to hear Codona 1, but I hope to soon. As of now, I STILL can't get enough of this disc, and it's been a while since I first heard it. Enjoy...--an Amazon reviewer

Codona 3
with Don Cherry and Collin Walcott


Codonais, of course, Collin Walcott, Don Cherry, and Nana Vasconcelos working together; of their three releases, this ends up my favorite. All three are multi-instrumentalists of amazing range. On this outing, Walcott, a Brit known for his work with Oregon, plays sitar, hammered dulcimer, and tablas; Cherry -- a longtime Ornette Coleman collaborator and a composer of some truly delightful albums in his time, plays trumpet, organ, and doussn'gouni; and Vasconcelos, from Brazil, does percussion and berimbau. All three sing, at times, though in the sense of using voice as an instrument, with only one cut, "Clicky Clacky," actually having lyrics. The CD is sort of a mixture of world music with jazz, if that wasn't already obvious, and has a marvelous depth of texture and warmth to it. Also variety -- it ranges from really quite trippy material to songs that sound like joyous tribal lullabies to very catchy and almost unclassifiable pieces like "Hey Da Ba Doom." Well worth buying. --an Amazon reviewer

Dança Da Cabeças
with Egberto Gismonti

Egberto Gismonti meet Nana Vasconcelos by chance, in Paris, as he was on his way to Oslo, for the recording of this music. It was to be a "solo" album at first. But the meeting proved to be a blessing. These dear musicians made one of the most memorable recordings of music that I can think of, only hours after the first meet each other. --an Amazon reviewer

Fragments: Modern Tradition

Landscapes of Memory. Road to the Pygmies. Rhythm of Life. The titles of these films speak of environments that neither a 28.8 modem could dial into nor a 4x4 Jeep trailblaze out of. Nana Vasconcelos's scores for these and three other movies channel an atavistic intelligence that has long been existing under landfills and subway lines. With shamanistic force, the singsong voices and harsh croaks of guardian spirits are conjured up to babble in mad conversation, while the sound of percussion and strings alternately scrapes and swoons, mimicking the more uncontrolled side of nature. This is the music Timothy Leary might have heard when he first communed with the desert over peyote. --Michael Woodring

If You Look Far Enough
with Arild Andersen and Ralph Towner

This trio is great. Of course, I am not saying nothing new, but although everybody knows the capacity and skills of Andersen, Towner and Vasconcelos, this trio works as an unit.The music of this CD can take your imagination to go around not only to all the world but to your interior in search for different emotions. A special note for Nana. As he can demonstrate in every participation, he is the greatest creator of atmosphere at all. And in this CD (as he could show in "Travels" and "So far Wichita falls..." with Pat Metheny) he can not be replaced by anybody. In conclusion, this is an enormous CD that any fan of Towner, Arild or Nana must have. --an Amazon reviewer

Lambarena-Bach to Africa
Nana Vasconcelos, Sami Ateba,
and conductor Tomas Gubitsch

This CD is a marvelous marriage of two widely varying styles of music--it's extremely successful at shaping the moments of transition between the Bach and the African music as well as overlaying the two. Having been raised with a little bit of both of these cultures, the African and the European, I am delighted to find this very classy musical synthesis. --an Amazon reviewer

with Antonello Salis


I have full respect for those who think that the only enjoyable pleasures are the love-at-first-sight ones. But I don't agree. When I bought this CD some years ago, the shop's host warned me that this was a great one but also a tough one. Since then, each time I listen to it I discover new sounds and I improve my ability to be impressed again and again. These pieces are always a mystery but at the same time are so primarily human that you can't avoid finding links on the intellectual and physical levels. The brilliant percussion leads you to a catharsis. The litany of the fantastic berimbau is overwhelming. The voice is tranformed into an instrument through emerging whispers and wild screaming. You can find a mix of the most rustic, almost tribal sounds blended with an academic chords section. --an Amazon reviewer


compilation album

Someone once said that if Naná Vasconcelos ever lost his luggage, with all his instruments in it, on his way to a concert, he could still do it, and it would bring people to tears. That is exactly what you'll get in this album. If you're looking for harmonious bossa nova or Brazilian popular music go somewhere else. I'd say this is folk music at its rawest. One of the best cds I own. --an Amazon reviewer

Also See:
Brazilian Drummers & Percussionists 

Eliane Elias  Egberto Gismonti   Hermeto Pascoal
Milton Nascimento       Flora Purim      Elis Regina




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