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World Music CD Reviews Greater Latin America

ANTONIO CARLOS JOBIM

By Jeff Tamarkin
Published September 13, 2005

Jazz Masters 13
Verve

If Jobim had written nothing other than "Desafinado," which virtually defined bossa nova, this Brazilian icon would still rank among the great ones. The composer/guitarist's own 1963 recording, actually cut in New York, is but one of 16 career highlights collected on this single-disc sampler. The compilers wisely cherry-pick from flash points throughout Jobim's recorded history, from the '60s to the '80s, tossing in interpretations by Stan Getz, Astrud Gilberto and Elis Regina, but also allowing for a handful of lesser known but equally vibrant pieces to illuminate Jobim's singular songwriting talent. Jobim was never anything but smooth and elegant, Brazilian jazz personified. This condensation of his oeuvre is a classy introductory set.