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Bossa Nova Stories

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Album Review

Eliane Elias returns to the music of her native Brazil with this collection of bossa nova favorites, though there are a few American standards and pop songs recast as bossa novas as well. The pianist has grown in confidence as a vocalist over the course of several CDs, developing a sexy yet never overdone style that beautifully complements the music. With her husband Marc Johnson (who has also been her longtime bassist of choice), drummer Paulo Braga, either Oscar Castro-Neves or Ricardo Vogt on acoustic guitar, and a pair of guests, Elias proves herself as a talented singing pianist, effortlessly switching between English and Portuguese lyrics. Some of the tracks add string orchestrations, yet they never overwhelm the arrangements. Highlights include the easygoing rendition of "The More I See You," the relaxed and sensual treatment of "Estate (Summer)" (which adds Toots Thielemans on harmonica), "I'm Not Alone (Who Loves You?)" (which includes composer Ivan Lins in a vocal duet with Elias), and a surprisingly effective setting of Stevie Wonder's "Superwoman" (with Thielemans making another guest appearance). Eliane Elias remains one of the top bossa nova interpreters, in addition to her skills in many other jazz styles.

Customer Reviews

MR.

Elian Elias is just about the greatest pianist I have ever heard. With all due respect to Diana Krall and all the other great piano players whom I admire so much, to me they now seem to pale in comparison. Her chords are so beautiful, her playing technique and arrangements so overwhelming. The beauty and melancholy of her music, her natural.. and I might say ..sultry vocals touches one's soul. "Bossa Nova Stories" and all her other albums is a must for all music lovers.

Biography

Born: March 19, 1960 in São Paulo, Brazil

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

The classical tradition meets the spontaneity of jazz through the virtuosic playing of Brazil-born and New York-based pianist Eliane Elias. A former member of jazz ensemble Steps Ahead, Elias has continued to explore two distinct musical streams through her solo recordings and her performances since the mid-'80s. In 1993, she became one of the few artists to release jazz and classical albums simultaneously. In a review of a concert in her homeland, Brazil magazine praised Elias for "her...
Full Bio