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World Music CD Reviews Africa

CESARIA EVORA

By JAMES RODGERS
Published March 3, 2006

The Very Best Of
RCA Victor

The Very Best Of Cesaria Evora captures the essence of the extremely rich catalog of this very talented vocalist. She sings mornas and coladeiras, the indigenous music of her homeland, Cape Verde. But saying she sings these styles is a gross understatement. Cesaria is to mornas what Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong are to jazz. She’s so closely connected to this music because she has stayed respectful to its roots while making it her own, her laid-back vocal style belying the emotional power and mood she creates. Avoiding the vocal pyrotechnics of most divas, she has found an entrancing way to connect her voice directly to her heart. For her fans, RCA Victor has included enough goodies to entice you. There’s a wonderful remix of “Sodade” with gravelly voiced Angolan singer Bonga adding new textures to this great song, plus two unreleased tracks, and a bonus cut. The Very Best Of… is a good place to start, or a great way to celebrate, the music of Cesaria Evora.