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World Music CD Reviews Greater Latin America


By Ernest Barteldes
Published January 24, 2008

Here to Stay-Gershwin & Jobim
Nu Vision

Antonio Carlos Jobim is on the short list as one of the greatest composers of the 20th century, so it’s fitting that some of his best-known works should be paired here with songs by George Gershwin. Curated by BR6, a Rio-based a cappella group who have the rare ability to make familiar songs sound fresh, the collection jumps off with a blend of “Rhapsody In Blue” and “Waters Of March.” From there, we get a selection of tunes that includes a heartfelt rendition of “Someone To Watch Over Me”and a wordless version of “Pato Preto,” one of Jobim’s more obscure tunes. Although it’s a bit unnerving to hear yet another take on “The Girl From Ipanema,” the pleasures of “Song Of The Jet” and a swing-oriented version of “Fascinating Rhythm” dispel any misgivings. Clearly intended for the international market, all the songs are performed in English (except for a snippet of “Water To Drink”), while the drums are actually pure vocal beatboxing by Naife Simoes—a convincing facsimile of the real thing.