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Manhã de Carnaval — Guitar Music from Brazil
Marco Pereira (b. 1956)

Pixaim [3.20]
João Pernambuco (1883-1947)

Sons de Carilhões (Sounds of Bells) [2.28]
Graúna (Blackbird) [2.55]
Pó de Mico (Itching Powder) [2.59]
Marco Pereira

Plainte (Lament) [3.06]
Num pagode em Planaltina (Gathering in Planaltina) [4.43]
O Chôro de Juliana (Juliana's Chôro) [3.02]
Antonio Carlos Jobim (1927-1994)

Luiza [3.27]
Garota de Ipanema (Girl from Ipanema) [2.58]
Luiz Bonfa (1922-2001)

Manhã de Carnaval (Morning of the Carnival) [3.22
Sergio Assad (b. 1952)

Aquarelle: I Divertimiento [7.32]; II Valseana [2.57]; III Preludio e Toccatina [2.57
Egberto Gismonti (b. 1947)

Agua e Vinho (Water and Wine) [5.24]
Heitor Villa-Lobos (1887-1959)

Sentimental Melody (1957) [4.20]
Ronaldo Miranda (b. 1948)

Appassionata [7.49]
Graham Anthony Devine, Guitar by Andres D. Marvi, 2001; and by Hernandez Y Aguado 1965, fitted with Saverez Corum Strings.
Recorded St. John Chrysostom Church, Newmarket, ON, Canada, 30 January 2003
Notes in English and Deutsch
Naxos 8.557295 [68.36]

 

Devine is such a fantastic virtuoso that you forget he’s playing a guitar, and instead would be sure you are hearing an ensemble of many instruments. The pieces are arranged to form a program creating the effect of a 68 minute tone poem consisting of episodes of Brazilian semi-classical music, rather like what one might overhear walking through a street carnival. Yes, it’s really solo guitar, but you swear you hear percussion, strings, brass. Ultimately, it’s a pop music experience, although admittedly the lines are blurred in Brazil, and even in other countries there are instances of pop music having become classical through the passage of time, e.g., "The Mikado" or "Oklahoma." But having listened to this disk several times I can’t hear the individual pieces in the sense one would hear them at a recital, and I suspect Devine would play them very differently in such a situation, although I have no reason to suspect he has in any way altered them. And few of these pieces have any independent classical recital tradition which would make them distinguishable.

A chôros was originally a piece of dance music — tango, waltz, or polka — as played by an ensemble consisting of a guitar, a cavaquinho (a sort of Portuguese small guitar), and a flute, generally associated with the lower middle class in the early years of the twentieth century. The form was used frequently by Villa Lobos and developed into a vehicle for serious expression (A chôros by Villa Lobos is the only music my dog will dance to), but here is represented in solo guitar pieces by several other composers.

So, relax and enjoy. This is a great guitar recording as such, and of interest to anyone who likes Brazilian music.

Paul Shoemaker



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