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World Music CD Reviews Greater Latin America

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Trio Da Paz
Somewhere Blue
Toucan

By Marty Lipp

Published December 15, 2006

Brazilian music and jazz had been swinging together for decades, even before samba shimmied onto the scene. Bossa nova was the most well-known nexus of the two genres, but like Latin jazz, Brazilian jazz lives in both worlds while remaining its own unique tropical animal. Among the premier purveyors of Brazilian jazz, Trio da Paz is a New York-based group of three Brazilian musicians who each have long resumes as top session players. When they get together, they create palpable magic, making some of the most celebratory jazz you can find today. Though the trio crackles with energy, its sound is essentially acoustic, led by Romero Lubambo, a go-to guitarist for singers who love his melodic, unfailingly rhythmic style. On Somewhere, the trio plays some modern Brazilian classics, such as Jobim’s “Corcovado,” but it visits some other beaches too, giving a Brazilian wax to “Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead,” and wrestling the jazz standard “Take Five” out of its 5/4 time signature. This all-instrumental album is effervescent enough to perk up a party, but equally worth delving into for some attentive listening.

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