- Released: September 24, 2002
- Label: Sbme Special Mkts.
Mojo (Publisher) - 2/03, p.89
"...The key to the album's undoubted charm is the haunting quality of Elias's delicate, whispery vocals....Beautiful and bewitching..."
- 1.Kissed by Nature
- 2.A Volta - (Portuguese)
- 3.Manhattan - (Portuguese)
- 4.Apareceu - (Portuguese)
- 6.Where Did You Go
- 7.Balance - (Portuguese, remix)
- 8.Djavan Medley - (Portuguese)
- 12.Kissed by Nature - (remix)
- 13.Balance - (remix)
Personnel includes: Eliane Elias (vocals, piano); Rick Margitza (tenor saxophone); Randy Brecker (trumpet, flugellhorn); Marc Johnson (bass); Paul Braga, Joey Baron (drums, percussion).
Producers include: Bossacucanova.
Recorded Bennett Studios, Englewood, New Jersey.
Personnel: Eliane Elias (vocals, piano); Rick Margitza (tenor saxophone); Randy Brecker (trumpet, flugelhorn); Paulinho Braga, Joey Baron (drums, percussion).
Audio Mixer: Dae Bennett.
Recording information: Bennett Studios, Englewood, NJ; Hampton Sound, Bridgehampton, NY.
Photographer: Danny Miller .
Arranger: Eliane Elias.
For a long time, Eliane Elias seemed like a fixture at Blue Note. The Brazilian singer/pianist started recording for that well-known jazz label in the late '80s, and she was still on Blue Note when the 21st century arrived. But in 2002, Elias did the unexpected and moved to RCA; Kissed by Nature is her first RCA release. For the most part, this is a vocal album, although Elias does get in some likable solos -- and this time, she emphasizes relaxed, laid-back Brazilian pop-jazz. Kissed by Nature is essentially Brazilian easy listening, although it isn't bloodless elevator Muzak; even at her most commercial, Elias probably has too much substance and integrity for the average smooth jazz/NAC station. One thing she doesn't have is a great voice. While Elias is an excellent pianist, her voice is undeniably thin -- as a vocalist, she doesn't have a fantastic range by any means. But despite Elias' obvious limitations as a singer, her vocals (some in English, some in Portuguese, and some wordless) are pleasant enough on caressing pop-jazz originals like "A Volta," "Balancˆ," and the title track. No one will accuse Elias' singing of being in a class with the five-star performances of Gal Costa or Ithamara Koorax, but she does bring warmth and sincerity to her singing -- and those things count for something. Most of the material on Kissed by Nature was written or co-written by Elias; the exception is a medley of songs by Brazilian superstar Djavan, and that medley is arguably the album's standout track (which isn't to say that Elias' own writing isn't respectable). Kissed by Nature won't go down in history as one of Elias' essential releases, but it's a decent effort that's worth hearing if you need a dose of Brazilian mood music. ~ Alex Henderson