Quinto (World Village, 2012)
At a time when most of the popular voices in fado are female, Portuguese singer António Zambujo has brought back the male voice to the top tier of fado vocalists. Zambujo was born in Beja, in southern Portugal and grew up listening to the regional folk music of the area known as “cante alentejano.”
Quinto is Zambujo’s 5th album and he combines the ancient fado tradition with unconventional elements such as clarinet and cavaquinho, laid back jazzy electric guitar, and even Caetano Veloso influences. However, the Portuguese guitar still plays an essential role in his music.
Although most of the material is of Portuguese origin, Zambujo includes pieces by Brazilian songwriters Márcio Faraca and Rodrigo Maranhão. He also celebrates his riits with a cante alentejano piece titled “O Que á Feito Dela?”
The lineup in Quinto includes António Zambujo on vocals and acoustic guitar; José Manuel Neto on Portuguese guitar; Bernardo Couto on Portuguese guitar; Carlos Manuel Proença on acoustic guitar; Ricardo Cruz, Portuguese bass and double bass; José Miguel Conde on bass clarinet and clarinet; Jon Luz on cavaquinho and guitar; André Conde on trombone; Mário Delgado on electric guitar; and Alexandre Frazão on drums.
Quinto is a superb fado album with tasteful innovative arrangements by one of the leading new voices in Portuguese music.