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Album Review

Antonio Carlos Jobim's Quiet Now: Nights of Quiet Stars is probably the most successful entry in this series of Polygram reissues, because the Brazilian composer's music is so blissfully suited to compilations that focus on the gentle, romantic side of jazz. Perhaps it's his sleepy, low-key voice, which makes Perry Como sound like Darby Crash, or the mellow casualness of his melodies, which mine a remarkable number of subtle emotional shadings out of a surprisingly limited number of guitar chords and the intangible Brazilian concept of saudade, a kind of happy-sadness-shading-into-sad happiness that's at the root of his music. All of these 13 tracks are familiar to even casual Antonio Carlos Jobim fans — indeed, those who have the three-disc set The Man From Ipanema are missing almost nothing of consequence — but they're very cleverly sequenced, progressing from the scene-setting (and title-providing) "Corcovado" (the classic Elis Regina version), slowly progressing to the childlike bliss of Astrud Gilberto's take on "Dindi," and then back down to the shimmering stillness of Regina's version of "Inutil Paisagem," a lovely bit of melancholy. It's nothing new, but it's terrific mood music.


Born: 25 January 1927 in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil

Genre: Brazilian

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

It has been said that Antonio Carlos Brasileiro de Almeida Jobim was the George Gershwin of Brazil, and there is a solid ring of truth in that, for both contributed large bodies of songs to the jazz repertoire, both expanded their reach into the concert hall, and both tend to symbolize their countries in the eyes of the rest of the world. With their gracefully urbane, sensuously aching melodies and harmonies, Jobim's songs gave jazz musicians in the 1960s a quiet, strikingly original alternative...
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Top Albums and Songs by Antônio Carlos Jobim

Quiet Now - Nights of Quiet Stars, Antônio Carlos Jobim
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