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Carol Saboya: Carolina

- CD Reviews

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Carol Saboya: Carolina

Carol Saboya on Vocal
Antonio Adolfo on Piano
Marcelo Martins on Flute, Alto Flute, Soprano Sax
Leo Amuedo on Guitars
Jorge Helder on Double Bass
Rafael Barata on Drums
André Siqueira and Rafael Barata on Percussion
Special Guest: Claudio Spiewak on Acoustic Guitar


Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
September 14, 2016

This CD is an elegant selection of Brazilian tunes from Carol Saboya’s homeland, gorgeously interpreted on her lush, sensual vocals. Accompanying Carol are Antonio Adolfo on piano, Marcelo Martins on flutes and sax, Leo Amuedo on guitars, Jorge Helder on bass, Rafael Barata on drums and percussion (with André Siqueira), and Claudio Spiewak on guitar (track #9). Ms. Saboya sings with lilting phraseology, melting her voice to the instrumental arrangements (by Mr. Adolfo). Most tracks are in Portuguese, my favorites, with some also in English, for those who hone in on lyrical intent. Composers represented include the crème de la crème of Brazilian greats, like Antonio Carlos Jobim, Pixinguinha, João Bosca, and Vinicius de Moraes. An exceptional tune, in English, is by John Lennon and Paul McCartney, called “Hello Goodbye”. Yet, when I hear this tropical music genre, I prefer to listen to the tunes in their linguistic essence. This album is a must-have for personal and party listening pleasure.

Notable tracks:

#3 – Senhoras do Amazonas (Ladies from the Amazon) – Composed by João Bosca / Belchior. With swirling tonality and yearning expressiveness, Ms. Saboya transports the listener to the breezy Rio coast. She’s gorgeously backed up by Mr. Adolfo on rhythmic piano, Mr. Barata on lush drums, Mr. Siqueira on ambient percussion, Mr. Helder on earthy bass, Mr. Amuedo on a generous guitar solo, and Mr. Martins on muted brass. The mood is ebullient and reverent, with beguiling nuance.

#7 – A Felicidade (Joy/Happiness) – Composed by Antonio Carlos Jobim / Vinicius de Moraes. Before a bristling bossa beat kicks in, Ms. Saboya opens this track in resonant a cappella. The piano and rhythm backup is streamlined to showcase Ms. Saboya’s artistry with a warm glow. The listener will recognize this renowned tune and be uplifted in its tropical aura.

#9 – Faltando um Pedaço (Missing a Piece) – Composed by Djavan. With persuasive longing in her singing, Ms. Saboya seems to be enveloped in a nightclub spotlight, a tinkling piano nearby. Understated drums and percussion, plus guitar-bass ornamentations, infuse this song with plush, Brazilian spirit. .

#10 – Zanzibar – Composed by Edu Lobo. This brisk tune conjures up balmy ocean breezes, with flute and percussive effects. The album’s guest on acoustic guitar, Claudio Spiewak, presents an ecstatic solo that magnifies the track’s musical color and clarity. This track is danceable, hummable, and memorable, an upbeat listening experience..

For more information, contact Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower at