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World Music CD Reviews Greater Latin America

Tim Maia

By Ernest Barteldes
Published August 21, 2008

The Soul Of Brazil
Universal Music Latino

In the 10 years since his untimely passing at age 56, Tim Maia and his music have been rediscovered by a younger generation, many of whom got to know him through re-recordings by contemporary artists like Kid Abelha, Lulu Santos and Marisa Monte. During the 1970s, Maia was part of a small group of musicians who, inspired by American funk and soul, sought to adapt and translate the style to Brazil by adding local musical elements. This disc offers some of the stellar hits Maia churned out during his two decades on the scene unfortunately, the set also chronicles his spectacular decline in the 1980s, when he recorded songs that were mass-produced by the Michael Sullivan-Paulo Massadas music factory for immediate consumption. Nevertheless, there are some great long-lost gems here, including two English-language tunes: the ballad “These Are The Songs” (in a duet with Elis Regina) and the funky (yet poignant in retrospect) “Nobody Can Live Forever.”