JazzTimes - 3/96, p.121
"...the guitarist demonstrates a musicality which happily marries lyricism, rhythmic/percussive energies and a healthy range of idioms....Assad is making her own way, checking in with Brazilian and family traditions while discovering new facets of her own voice along the way..."
Personnel: Badi Assad (guitar, vocals, harmonic copper pipe, electric fan, percussion); Cyro Baptista (percussion).
Recorded at St. Peter's Episcopal Church, New York, New York from June 26-29, 1995.
While Badi Assad isn't a jazz singer per se, the singer/acoustic guitarist clearly thrives on improvisation and spontaneity. This is no doubt one of the main reasons she ended up on the jazz-oriented Chesky Records. When Rhythms was recorded at St. Peter's Episcopal Church in New York, Chesky treated the project much as it would treat a jazz recording -- the tape was rolling, and Assad was encouraged to simply let loose and blow. No overdubbing took place, and this very honest and straightforward approach makes for a riveting listen on songs by Chico C‚sar, Marco Pereira and other Brazilian composers. Although the vast majority of her influences are Brazilian, Assad's Lebanese heritage is a definite advantage on the magnificent and varied Rhythms. ~ Alex Henderson