Clarice Assad: Window To The World

Brazilian singer and Copenhagen rhythm give lively and affecting performances of songs by Milton Nascimento


This is Brazilian singer-pianist Clarice Assad’s tribute to fellow Brazilian composer Milton Nascimento. All the songs on Window To The World are his compositions and display his collaborations with several lyricists, among whom are Lô & Marcio Borges, on Clube Da Esquina Nº 1 and Nº 2; Fernando Brant on six songs including Canção Do Sal, Milagre Dos Peixes and Morro Velho; Ronaldo Bastos on Nada Será Como Antes and Faca Amolada.

From early childhood, Assad was aware of Nascimento’s works and following her move to the USA she continued to hear it and became aware that his music held qualities that ignored geographical borders and the restraints of time that sometimes adversely affect many musical forms. Gradually, she incorporated his music into her repertoire, finding as she did so that audiences responded well to the songs, and some of which she has included here.

Recently, while touring Denmark, she was speaking of this music with drummer Johan Dynnesen and they impulsively decided that they would record this album. For this, they brought in bassist Jesper Bodilsen and accordionist Francesco Calì. This was in 2018, and later, back in the USA, Assad invited percussionist Keita Ogawa, with whom she has often worked in duo format, to participate in the project. Also adding to the mix are singers Muato and Assad’s brother Rodrigo.

The impulsiveness of setting up the session is mirrored in the lively performances of the songs, some of which have an air of happiness while others have a sense of deep longing. Perhaps needless to add, the lyrics are all in Portuguese, but Assad’s singing, strong and filled with emotion, enables her to overcomes this barrier to understanding.

Medley: Caxaná/Fe Cega, Faca Amolada/Paula E Bebeto; Canção Do Sal; Clube Da Esquina No 1; Janela Para O Mundo; Milagre Dos Peixes; Saudades Dos Aviões Da Panair (Conversando No Bar); Nada Será Como Antes; Clube Da Esquina No 2; Morro Velho (39.09)
Assad (v, p); Jesper Bodilsen (b); Johan Dynnesen (d); Francesco Calì (acc); plus Keita Ogawa (pc, tracks 1 & 4); Rodrigo Assad (v, tracks 3 & 8); Muato (v, tracks 1 & 7). Copenhagen, 2018.