Personnel: Kenny Barron (piano); Maucha Adnet (vocals); Anne Drummond (flute); Romero Lubambo (acoustic guitar); Nilson Matta (bass); Duduka Da Fonseca (drums); Valtinho (percussion).
Recorded at Systems Two Studios, Brooklyn, New York on February 13 & 14, 2002.
This release combines the elegant swing of nine-time Grammy-winner Kenny Barron with the first-call Brazilian rhythm section of Trio da Paz, an inspired cross fertilization that enhances both jazz and tropical elements. From the opening "Zumbi," which rolls in like a Carnaval parade, to the infectious closer, "This One," the CD is full of light. Other superb Barron compositions include the languorous "Cloud" and the danceable "Thoughts and Dreams," where his gentle piano solo flows into a lilting bossa. The remaining three tunes are familiar to fans of Trio da Paz from their previous albums. Here, the addition of Barron's thoughtful commentary and the lush, cooling flute of Anne Drummond gives them new dimension. Bassist Nilson Matta's "Paraty," named after an old Brazilian town, becomes a "party" with Barron's wonderful comping and fine solos all around; guitarist Romero Lubambo contributes his rousing, Bach-inspired baiao, "Bachiao," and drummer Duduka da Fonseca's "Dona Maria," with its intriguing syncopation, provides the scaffolding for some stellar bop choruses by Barron. The percussion by Valtinho is consistently atmospheric and tasteful. This is an exceptionally well-paced, melodic, spirit-lifting CD. Recommended. ~ Judith Schlesinger