Mares Profundos

Virgínia Rodrigues

Mares Profundos  (Natasha Records/Deutsche Grammophon/Universal Music B000091-02, 2004)

Virginia Rodrigues possesses a voice so evocative it personifies the very heart and the richness of Brazilian music. Fans of Rodrigues’s Nos and sambas will enjoy her latest offering, Mares Profundos on Natasha Records. Teaming up again with Caetano Veloso (he produced her first CD) as artistic director, Rodrigues casts a magical spell over a collection Afro-sambas by legendary duo of composer Baden Powell and lyricist Vinícius de Moraes (with another track teaming up Powell with Paulo César Pinheiro).

Rodrigues’s voice charms the very soul of sadness from tracks Tristeza E Solidão, Consolação and Canto de Iemanjá. Canto de Pedra Preta, Lapinha and Labareda (featuring Caetano Veloso) are light-hearted romps through the complex musical fabric of the Afro-samba of Bahia, drawing heavily on the African rhythms. These interpretations are instilled with a sophisticated elegance, due in large part of Rodrigues’s vocals and some smart orchestration. It goes without saying that teaming up the likes of Caetano Veloso and Virgínia Rodrigues makes for a first-class performance.

Fans will also appreciate the CD booklet. It contains some stunning photos of Rodrigues and scenic shots, as well as the lyrics and some history about Baden Powell, Vinícius de Moraes and the origins of the Afro-samba.

Author: TJ Nelson

TJ Nelson is a regular CD reviewer and editor at World Music Central. She is also a fiction writer. Check out her latest book, Chasing Athena’s Shadow.

Set in Pineboro, North Carolina, Chasing Athena’s Shadow follows the adventures of Grace, an adult literacy teacher, as she seeks to solve a long forgotten family mystery. Her charmingly dysfunctional family is of little help in her quest. Along with her best friends, an attractive Mexican teacher and an amiable gay chef, Grace must find the one fading memory that holds the key to why Grace’s great-grandmother, Athena, shot her husband on the courthouse steps in 1931.

Traversing the line between the Old South and New South, Grace will have to dig into the past to uncover Athena’s true crime.