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
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,"
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
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