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Made in Brazil tops iTunes charts

Made in Brazil reaches #1 on iTunes, #1 on Amazon.com and debuted at #3 On Billboard Traditional Jazz Chart, USA. It also topped the charts in France, Spain, Portugal, Brazil and other countries. Congratulations to Eliane and the whole team!

Eliane Performs in Paris on April 30th, International Jazz Day, Streamed Live!

Eliane performs in Paris on April 30th, International Jazz Day, streamed live!

Each year, the All-Star Global Concert brings together acclaimed jazz artists from around the world for a performance spanning styles, cultures, and languages. In the spirit of International Jazz Day, the Global All Star Concert takes place in Paris in a venue imbued with rich historical significance, representing jazz’s ability to connect disparate traditions and cultural identities. The 2015 All-Star Global Concert will feature a cast of internationally renowned jazz artists including pianists Eliane Elias and Herbie Hancock; Dee Dee Bridgewater, Al Jarreau, Annie Lennox, Dianne Reeves, Wayne Shorter, and many others.

Read more here: http://jazzday.com/concert/

International Jazz Day Global Concert 2015

Each year, the All-Star Global Concert brings together acclaimed jazz artists from around the world for a performance spanning styles, cultures, and languages. In the spirit of International Jazz Day, the Global All Star Concert takes place in a venue imbued with rich historical significance, representing jazz’s ability to connect disparate traditions and cultural identities. Few locations better embody this concept than the Paris UNESCO Headquarters. Completed in 1958, the building’s distinctive three-pointed star design was the work of 3 architects of different nationalities under the direction of an international committee. The building itself is considered international territory and belongs to the 195 UNESCO member states, making it a perfect symbol of the organization’s role as a shared commitment to the future of peaceful co-existence. Room 1, where the Global Concert webcast will take place, serves as the primary meeting space for the UNESCO General Conference. It is indeed appropriate that on April 30, the very chambers in which UNESCO strives to secure the foundations of peace will bear witness to a new kind of diplomatic enterprise: jazz.

The 2015 All-Star Global Concert will feature a cast of internationally renowned jazz artists including pianists John Beasley (Music Director), A Bu, Eliane Elias, Antonio Faraò, Isfar Sarabski and Herbie Hancock; trumpeters Till Brönner, Avishai Cohen, Hugh Masekela and Claudio Roditi; vocalists Dee Dee Bridgewater, Al Jarreau, Annie Lennox, Rudy Pérez and Dianne Reeves; saxophonists Igor Butman, Femi Kuti, Guillaume Perret and Wayne Shorter; bassists James Genus, Marcus Miller and Ben Williams; guitarist Lee Ritenour; drummer Terri Lyne Carrington, percussionist Mino Cinelu, harmonica player Grégoire Maret, and oud player Dhafer Youssef.

Read original review here: http://jazzday.com/concert/

The concert will be streamed live on the above website.

NPR: Singer And Composer Goes Home To Make Brazilan Music

Listen to Eliane Elias’ interview with Scott Simon from Weekend Edition Saturday.

“For the first time since moving to the U.S. in 1981, Eliane Elias recorded an album in her native Brazil. NPR’s Scott Simon speaks with the musician about her new album, Made in Brazil.”

Listen Here

ELIANE ELIAS’ MADE IN BRAZIL MARKS A MUSICAL HOMECOMING

ELIANE ELIAS’ MADE IN BRAZIL MARKS A MUSICAL HOMECOMING

March 31st release features Take 6, guitarist/vocalist Roberto Menescal and vocalists Mark Kibble and Ed Motta, with seven orchestral arrangements by Rob Mathes recorded at Abbey Road Studios

For Immediate Release – Eliane Elias’ Made in Brazil, scheduled for release on March 31, 2015 on Concord Jazz, marks a musical homecoming for the multi-GRAMMY®-nominated pianist/keyboardist/singer/composer. In her three-decade long career as a solo artist, Made in Brazil results from the first time she’s recorded a disc in her native Brazil since moving to the United States in 1981.

Elias wears many hats on this project as producer, composer, lyricist, arranger, pianist and vocalist. “I am completely immersed and involved in every single detail of the music and the recording process, from the birth of an idea until its completion through every aspect of the production until it reaches the public,” she explains.

Along with co-producers, Steve Rodby and Marc Johnson, her bass playing musical partner, Elias ventured ‘home’ and recruited a splendid cast of Brazilian musicians that include electric bassist Marcelo Mariano; guitarists Marcus Teixeira and Roberto Menescal; drummers Edu Ribeiro and Rafael Barata; and percussionists Mauro Refosco and Marivaldo dos Santos.

Elias peppered the sessions with delightful special guest performances from Mark Kibble and the multi-GRAMMY® Award-winning gospel vocal group Take 6; her singer/songwriter-daughter Amanda Brecker; one of Brazil’s most celebrated R&B stars, Ed Motta; and the distinguished bossa nova composer Roberto Menescal.

Elias also invited Rob Mathes to handle orchestral arrangements on seven of the 12 tracks, which were recorded in London at the legendary Abbey Road Studios. “It’s so touching to hear the music unfold,” she says of the orchestral arrangements after they were overdubbed onto the São Paulo sessions. “You can see the musical notes on paper, but it’s something else to hear them realized and performed by members of the London Symphonic Orchestra.”

In terms of material, Made in Brazil contains six Elias originals plus two Ary Barroso standards, two Roberto Menescal chestnuts, and two Antônio Carlos Jobim world-renowned gems. Elias, who did all the arrangements for the basic tracks, said that she purposely wanted Made in Brazil to incorporate three generations of Brazilian composers. “But it’s not a retro record,” she clarifies. “It’s very contemporary yet with the tradition and authenticity of Brazil; it’s music of the world with Brazilian DNA.”

Indeed, Made in Brazil’s pulsating bossa nova and samba rhythms, transfixing harmonies and sensual lyrics, accentuated by Elias’ own captivating vocals and incredible pianistic acumen, will surely become a 21st-century Brazilian classic. Elias frames the disc with two Barroso gems – “Brasil (Aquarela do Brasil)” and “No Tabuleiro da Baiana.”

“Brasil,” penned in 1939, “is a Brazilian anthem,” enthuses Elias. “It’s reported to be the most preferred Brazilian song of the last 100 years. It’s about the beautiful things of our country, the Brazilian Brazil; its natural beauty, mixed ethnic cultures and the samba.” Here she accentuates the composition with a suspenseful diaphanous string arrangement, whereas Elias and the band concoct an intoxicating, lithe groove. Atop of the infectious samba rhythm, Elias graces the proceeding with a glowing Fender Rhodes accompaniment, which later unfolds into a joyous and rhythmic solo.

Barroso wrote “No Tabuleiro da Baiana,” in 1936, which was made famous by singer Carmen Miranda. Through the song’s theme about a tabuleiro, a tray filled with edible treats typical of Bahia, Elias says that her rendition allows her to share her affection for that particular Brazilian state. “I love the culture; I love the people; I love the music; and I love the food,” Elias says.” I’ve been in love with Bahia all my life.” On her delightful rendition, Elias hammers the samba with harder, percussive accents via her vivacious piano playing inside some hip-swerving inducing accompaniment while her dexterous vocal rides and swings on top.

On “Você” and “Rio,” Elias invites the songs’ composer, Roberto Menescal, to accompany on guitar. On “Você,” the two sound like lovebirds on the 1963 bossa nova hit as they croon the romantic lyrics while the string arrangement sweeps them afloat. Elias’ impeccable piano accompaniment and sparkling improvisation provide the perfect musical trimming.

On “Rio,” which also dates back to 1963, Elias retains the same lineup as she sings the song’s elegant lyrics about the beauty of a seaside landscape while creating beautiful modulations and colors through her harmonies. “It was special to have the composer be a guest,” Elias says of her collaboration with Menescal. “We shared some very tender moments.”

As a bonus track, Elias delivers a rapturous makeover of Menescal’s most beloved composition, “Little Boat (O Barquinho),” yet another aquatic-themed showcase for Elias’ incredible musical rapport with Johnson and Barata. Elias’ ingenious arrangement at times evokes the motion of a boat floating and moving through waves.

Regarding Jobim, Elias performs his epochal “Águas de Março (Waters of March),” which she notes is the most covered Brazilian tune in the world.” Through the song’s picturesque, stream-of-consciousness lyrics, Elias puts a new spin on the song’s allure with her R&B-inflected mid-tempo arrangement, and by inviting Take 6 to sing with her. Elias’ arrangement is a completely fresh take on the song, and her vocals combined with Take 6 are splendid. “Ironically, when Jobim wrote this song in 1972, he thought he had reached the end of his career,” Elias explains. “The lyrics talk about being at the end of the road, about being alone, but the song’s message ultimately is optimistic and carries hope.”

Elias’ other revisit of Jobim’s music on Made in Brazil illustrates her capricious yet musical ingenuity. She delivers a sublime mashup of Jobim’s “Este Seu Olhar” and “Promessas.” Accompanied by Johnson, Teixeira and Ribeiro, this elegant rendition works splendidly as Elias delivers a heartfelt interpretation of the songs. Elias notes that the chord sequence of both compositions is the same and both melodies can be sung together simultaneously.

Whereas the aforementioned compositions display Elias’ mastery at arranging and interpreting Brazilian standards, other songs on Made in Brazil show her deft musicianship as a composer and lyricist. Draped with a gorgeous string arrangement, the yearning “Searching” puts Elias’ enchanting singing and piano playing squarely in the center as she coos the romantic lyrics about the affairs of the heart. This song evokes the timeless quality of a Frank Sinatra standard.

Elias picks up the tempo slightly on the effervescent “Some Enchanted Place,” which contains poetic, optimistic lyrics and features guest vocals from her daughter Amanda Brecker.

Vocalist Mark Kibble, Take 6’s main arranger, sings with Elias on “Incendiando” and “Driving Ambition.” On “Incendiando” the stellar performances of Elias and Kibble heighten the romantic and sexual tension revealed in the song.

“Driving Ambition” equally simmers with an erotic charge, thanks to the song’s titillating automobile metaphors and the sauntering bossa nova/Latin blend of rhythms. Kibble’s background vocals are sonic brush strokes of imagery perfectly complementing the seductive vocals by Elias.

The poetic pop/R&B ballad “Vida” features the prominent Brazilian R&B singer Ed Motta. Elias and Motta portray characters in a musical drama. Elias’ character describes what a woman wants in a romantic partner and Motta responds to her as the man she is looking for.

Amidst a magnificent string arrangement, Elias’ gorgeous composition “A Sorte do Amor (The Luck of Love)” is a comely piano and bass duet between her and Johnson that belies an empathic relationship built upon years spent together. Elias explains, “The lyrics are a bit ironic. They describe a love so incredibly intense, it takes away one’s sleep and peace of mind.”

Elias’ songs and lyrics on Made in Brazil reveal the skills of a great songwriter. The intelligent, sensitive lyrics, beautiful melodies and rich, touching harmonies evoke some of the great songs of the 20th century and give continuity to the line of famous Brazilian composers. This album establishes Elias once and for all as one of Brazil’s most eminent musical artists.

“When I write lyrics, I am inclined to talk about feelings, wishes of the heart and life situations,” Elias says. “Aspects of love – being in a relationship; the search for the right person; the search for happiness; romance; and the desires of our hearts, while I amplify these ideas and bring another depth to the message with the melodies and harmonies.”

Listening to Made in Brazil and diving into Elias’ originals and fetching interpretations of Brazilian classics will surely delight and fill your heart and ears with soul-stirring joy.

London Times review of Eliane at Union Chapel

Clive Davis
Published at 12:01AM, October 1 2013
The Times of London
****

At first it seemed it might be the wrong venue. After all, Eliane Elias is much more used to playing Ronnie Scott’s when she comes to London. Yet by the end of the evening the Brazilian singer-pianist had turned the crowded Congregational church into the most intimate of nightclubs.

It makes perfect sense for her to have chosen Chet Baker as the subject of her new album, I Thought About You. Live the ill-starred trumpeter, Elias – born in Sao Paulo but now based the the US – is an instrumentalist who has made a small voice go a long, long way. Her vocals, which were a surprisingly late addition to her repertoire, add an extra dimension of fragility and romance; she brings native guile to every Jobim standard she touches.

When she locks on to a bop theme she swings as hard and intelligently as any pianist from the post-bill Evans generation. If her technique can, in fact, be overpowering at times, her singing creates a rare sense of space and repose. When she purred her way through There Will Never Be Another You, the parallels with Baker’s own understated phrasing were startling. Drummer Rafael Barata, guitarist Steve Cardenas, and Danish bassist Thomas Oveson provided impeccable accompaniment.

The music floated even more delicately when Barata briefly left the stage. Baker was fond of working withouth a drummer, as Elias reminded us by quoting one of his off-hand comments: “it takes a great durmmer to be better than no drummer at all”.

As for the Brazilian numbers, Elias even managed to inject new life into the over-familiar Girl From Ipanema at the very end. Desafinado and So Danco Samba skipped merrily. Por Causa de Voce shimmers in the dark

Eliane Elias: Brazilian musician blends piano, voice

Pianist Eliane Elias was nine months pregnant with her daughter, Amanda, when she finally gave in to her then-husband, jazz trumpeter Randy Brecker, and agreed to sing on their forthcoming 1986 CD, named for the newborn who became singer-songwriter Amanda Brecker. Elias was always singing lovely songs from her native Brazil around the house but not when she performed.

Read more here.

Some Velvet Morning – Jazzwise Feature

Pianist and singer Eliane Elias always brings a rarefied blend of sensuality and intelligence to everything she plays – be it her recent Brazilian treatment of classics by The Doors and Dave Brubec, her outstanding instrumental work as a solo artist, or her collaborations with Herbie Hancock and as an early member of Steps Ahead. Peter Quinn talks to her about bringing all this together on her emotionally charged new album that’s a tribute to the beautifully melancholic life and music of Chet Baker.

Ouest France review of Eliane Elias in Caen Fr.

Ten minutes after the doors opened, the church of Saint-Nicolas de Caen is already packed on Thursday night for the highlight of the festival Voice Viva Voce. People are impatient to listen to one of the most beautiful voices in contemporary jazz. Eliane Elias, accompanied by three musicians on the scene. Direction to Brazil surfing bossa nova rhythms with the song Bananeira, bananier in French. A soft voice, suave put a little sunshine in their hearts. The heat permeates the walls of a chilly church.

The artist is charming, smiling and touches the public . The journey continues with Desafinado composer Antonio Carlos Jobim. Eliane Elias is surrounded with Marc Johnson, her partner for 27 years, inspired bassist, Freddie Bryant smiling, and Mike Shapiro master of rhythm and percussion sticks. The four musicians are in harmony, each song is punctuated by improvisations which are real performance.

Love, joy, sadness.

Some Chet Baker, to whom she dedicated her last album. In I thought about you, flagship song of the album followed by the romantic Embraceable you, so beautiful that affect the driest souls. Of love, joy, sadness, the emotions vary with each song. Seduced, the audience follows the singer wherever it takes them. It was now that the three musicians leave the stage for an intimate moment.

Pianist with quick and accurate fingers, she travels on the piano with such ease through the songs. No frills, pure voice, pure content,  certainly inimitable. Finally, she performed in front of the stage Rosa Morena, a sensual complicity with her guitarist. For the last song, she makes room for  two of her fantastic musicians: Marc Johnson and Mike Shapiro. We were discovering the beauty of the sound of a bass solo with mouths opened, and remained speechless in front of the spectacular show drummer. The audience thanked the artists for these magical moments in the cheering up standing ovations.origin

ICON Suggests: Eliane Elias, I Thought About You (A Tribute To Chet Baker)

A one-of-a-kind pianist and performer, you never know what Eliane Elias will do next. The Brazilian native is an indefatigable interpreter of song, effortlessly shifting between styles and moods. In concert, she has a story behind every tune and infuses her playing with a party-like groove, yet she remains a consummate musician with a deep, soulful vibe that she always brings to the material. Over the course of many albums, she has dabbled in pop, lounge, Jobim tributes and straight-ahead styles, most recently for the ECM label on the affecting instrumental favorite from 2012, Swept Away. She can still surprise, which happens frequently on I Thought About You: A Tribute To Chet Baker.

Produced in part and arranged by Elias, every hit associated with Baker swings with a touch of either Brazilian or bossa nova rhythms, supported by a first rate band of Brazilian and American musicians like bassist (and Elias’s husband) Marc Johnson, bravura trumpeter Randy Brecker and guitarist Oscar Castro-Neves. Besides the rich vamps that fulfill comfy, head-bobbing versions of the title track and “This Can’t Be Love,” the album’s spirited charm speaks directly to Elias’ precise vocals and enthralling piano playing whether on lush ballads or mid-tempo gems like “That Old Feeling.” The biggest surprise is that Elias hasn’t played up on Baker’s innate vulnerability, but rather celebrates his charisma through her own voice and melodic invention. Sultry, sexy and often endearing, I Thought About You is definitely one of the best recordings Eliane Elias has ever made. (14 tracks; 55 minutes)

By Nick Bewsey