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coverpic flag Brazil - Luna Kafé - Full Moon 12 - 10/16/97

Kátia Moraes & Brasil Nuts
Ten Feet And The Sun
SugarCane Records

You have probably seen and heard quite a number of Brazilian singers or groups who choose to make a living outside of Brazil. Some or most of them choose a fairly easy path. They sing the traditional and tried-and-true type of Brazilian music. In that category you will find those singers and groups doing the works of Tom Jobim, Mílton Nascimento, João Bosco, Gonzaguinha, and many other Brazilian classic and contemporary composers. These singers are doing a terrific job in promoting Brazilian music abroad.

In addition to that category, there is a very small group of original performers. Those are the singers writing their own songs and showing the world the new Brazilian music. Among those, Kátia Moraes emerges as a strong and leading force. With original compositions penned by Kátia herself and fellow Brasil Nuts members, she establishes her own boundaries and defines new parameters for Brazilian music. With this unique release, Ten Feet and The Sun, Kátia Moraes travels the entire rainbow of Brazilian music and more. Her eclectic compositions and vivacious performances cleverly mix Portuguese and English lyrics efficiently.

It's a Lie, the CD's opening track, is a stylized Brazilian northeastern "forró" dealing with the disillusion and lies in a love affair. Bill Brendle's keyboard work and Tony Shogren zabumba percussion are astonishing. With Tonto (Fool), the bossa nova presence is more than the mentioning of Tom Jobim's name. The use of an accordion is original and effective, and Kátia's own vocal overdubs will make you reminisce of Basia's style in Astrud (from her Time and Tide release). Cidades (Cities) unites California and Rio de Janeiro, whereas Mãe África (Mother Africa) takes us back to our roots. Maracatony is Tony Shogren's own version of another Brazilian northeastern tradition, the maracatú, a dance characterized by its predominant use of percussion instruments. Tony Shogren's himself is responsible for the exceptional performance of an array of instruments ranging from frying pans to atabaques. The result is a high-spirited dance. Closing the CD, Pagode no Maracanã (pagode is a samba style; Maracanã is the world's largest soccer stadium, in Rio de Janeiro) guest stars Luizinho Mila playing cavaquinho. This pagode samba is ebullient and full of excitement.

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