Kerry Linder
 
  There is a word in Portuguese that doesn’t translate easily into English:‘saudade.’ Some would say it means a yearning or longing, others that it conveys melancholy and nostalgia.
Whichever, this CD is full of saudade!

Kerry Linder, a native of Curacao (the largest island in the Netherlands Antilles), invites you to ‘sail away’ to a mythical place with a collection of sensuous, soft, and gently swinging melodies. "Growing up in Curacao exposed me to the rich traditions of the Afro-Caribbean culture and music played an important part in my life," says Kerry.

Her father, Felix Linder, is an accomplished concert violinist who played for many years with a popular quartet on the island and now resides in New York. Kerry’s versatility is demonstrated as she moves effortlessly between English and Portuguese. "I use language to convey the passion of the lyrics and to heighten the melodies of Paulo Andre Tavares’ sensitive arrangements." Paulo Andre, the guitarist accompanying Kerry, is an accomplished arranger and composer who regularly performs on the professional circuit in Brazil. This CD bears witness to his love of various musical styles, alternating between the old and the new with undertones of bossa, jazz, and blues. For Paulo Andre, improvisation is a form of composition.

Kerry is joined by percussionist Mauro Refosco, who has recorded with David Byrne and The Lounge Lizards; bassist David Finck; drummer Helio Schiavo; cellist Erik Friedlander; harmonica-vibes player Hendrik Meurkens, who has appeared on several Brazilian jazz recordings since the early 1980s; trumpeter Michael Philip Mossman, Head of the Jazz Graduate Program at Queens College; saxophonist and flutist Paulo Levi, who was recently on tour with Bebel Gilberto; tenor saxophonist and clarinetist Anat Cohen; trombonist Clark Gayton, who plays with Sting; and accordionist Bob Curto –- all highly acclaimed musicians in their own right and an integral part of the New York jazz scene.

The CD kicks off with Kerry’s original composition and title track, "Sail Away With Me," which is based on a poem that she wrote on the eve of the first anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy. "I started to put down my feelings on paper and realized that what people need is music -– beautiful music, soothing music -- that will take them to a better place." The lyrics are about a mythical place and there are references to various well-known songs from Jobim standards. The mood is enhanced by the plaintive tenor sax of Paulo Levi and the unusual sound effects created by David Finck on the upright bass (whales) and Eric Freidlander on cello (seagulls).

The instantly recognizable bossa nova classic, "Deixa" (Let Me), was written by two Brazilian legends, the guitarist Baden Powell and poet/lyricist, Vinicius de Moraes. This version is pure jazz bossa and listen for the clever segue of another Baden composition, "Berimbau." Notice also the sultry interplay between the trombone and tenor sax at the end. "This song is even more special as Helio Schiavo, who was Baden Powell’s drummer for many years, is playing with us."
"Adeus Batucada," is a swinging samba featuring Mauro Refosco’s playful and improvisational percussive beat. Listen for the old fashioned typewriter keys being struck and the squeaks of the cuica (a small friction drum with a thin stick inside attached to the drumskin).

"That’s All" An American classic, is played as a spirited bossa which features the percussive harmonica playing of Hendrik Meurkens. It almost sounds like the cuica and is pure magic!
"Inquietacao" was written by the legendary composer Ary Barroso in 1935. Barroso is known for his elaborate harmonies and beautiful sambas that praise the beauty and richness of Brazil --- Kerry’s sensitive rendition is very much in the style of the old samba-cancao. "We recorded it alternating between the samba and baiao (a northeastern song style)."

"Song For My Father" was composed by Horace Silver in 1964 and dedicated to his father who was of Cape Verdean descent.. It is played as a partido alto (type of urban samba with short refrains that singers follow with improvised verses) and Kerry’s duet-like scatting adds an interesting dimension.

"Language and Love" is a splendid bossa number composed by Joyce.. Replaying this tract, you will find it more invigorating each time. It is a personal favorite!

"St Judy’s Comet" is one of Paul Simon’s lesser-known songs. This rendition is played as a simple baiao, featuring syncopated melody and instrumental refrains in short arpeggios. Bob Curto’s accordion playing is evocative of forro, another musical style that is a variation of the baiao. There is also a touch of the blues and country in Paulo Andre’s chordal work. Listen for Mauro’s berimbau (an indigenous instrument which consists of a wooden bow with a metal string and gourd resonator).

The classic samba, "Manha de Carnaval" (Morning of Carnival) was composed by Luiz Bonfa as the theme to the 1959 film Black Orpheus. This version is given a contemporary feel and the lyrics are soft and sinuous.

The brilliant arrangement of Billie Holiday’s "God Bless the Child" is enhanced by Kerry’s serene and sultry blues bossa style. "I Don’t Know," as Kerry explains, is appealing to the cross-cultural influences in this CD., "I wanted to record this as I felt that there was a real Brazilian feeling in the melody. It lends itself easily to this musical genre and we have recorded it as a baiao."

The final track, "As Time Goes By", is a surprising jazz/bossa number showcasing the remarkable guitar playing of Paulo Andre. Have you ever heard a bossa version of this song? It certainly is a first for me!

So relax, listen and enjoy the journey as you sail away with Kerry.