Music » Livewire

Dori Caymmi

Saturday, July 8, at Nighttown.


It's very unusual for the masters of Brazilian popular music to appear in Northeast Ohio, but we get a chance to hear one of Brazil's legends when Dori Caymmi appears at Nighttown with a combo he's bringing from Los Angeles. Born in Rio de Janeiro in 1943, Caymmi is a member of one of Brazil's most distinguished musical families. His father, Dorival, has been compared to George Gershwin in terms of his status within the Brazilian musical scene, and his brother Darilo and sister Nana are also outstanding artists. Caymmi sings, plays guitar, composes, arranges, and produces; he began his training at 8, playing piano and studying classical music, and took up guitar at 15. While still a teenager, he recorded with Antonio Carlos Jobim and soon was arranging and producing for some of Brazil's foremost artists, including Caetano Veloso, Gal Costa, Milton Nascimento, Gilberto Gil, Elis Regina, Chico Buarque, Edu Lobo, and others. For the last decade, Caymmi has been living in the Los Angeles area, where he's participated in a wide variety of projects with performers such as Sarah Vaughan, Liza Minnelli, Dionne Warwick, George Duke, and Johnny Mathis, and has composed and sung on movie soundtracks. In addition to his Brazilian discs, Caymmi's released several albums in the States, the latest of which is the instrumental Cinema: A Romantic Vision. Caymmi, who sings in English as well as Portuguese, is a product of the bossa nova era and has a rich, unforced baritone timbre. He sings in a relaxed, gentle manner, at times employing meaningless syllables in a Brazilian version of scatting. His themes are melodically attractive, infectious, and based on interesting chord progressions, and his arrangements, like his singing, are full of warmth.

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