Home > 1971, brazil, tropicalia > Negro É Lindo

Negro É Lindo

Jorge Ben – Negro É Lindo (Phillips, 1971)

Today I find myself in a Starbucks somewhere in Downtown San Francisco. They ran out of bagels, it looks like rain, I have a fifty pound backpack with me and I’m not sure where I’m staying tonight. So obviously, I only need the best feel-good music right now.

I’m posting another Tropicalia album by one of the more discreet figures of the scene. Like Jards Macalé he is also a native of Rio de Janeiro and was somewhat of an outcast of the movement. He did not fit into Macalé’s group either as Ben’s focus was a bit more light-hearted and reminiscent of street samba of the favelas. What distinguishes and makes Jorge Ben a lasting figure is his heavy use of samba, as well as soul – two styles which were born in and dominate black neighborhoods – and incorporating them with the rock and bossa-nova music his contemporaries were playing. Jorge Ben’s music will often fuse samba drumming and whistles, bossa nova piano, and powerful soul singing to create a song that is both soothing and beautiful, but upbeat and danceable.

Negro É Lindo is a great record, but it’s hard to go wrong with any of Ben’s releases from this time period. The main reason why I posted this record versus any of his others is for the song “Cigana.” It opens so sweetly and serenely with a very clean bell and acoustic guitar, Jorge Ben’s smooth voice seeps into your ears like honey and dreamy violins ease away all tension. Overall, this is a fantastic album with a perfect blend of oneiric bossa-soul songs and lively samba-soul tracks. Interest in Jorge Ben’s music has resurfaced in the US as most of his early stuff has been reissued recently and he is more and more widely appreciated. Get going on this already!

1. Rita Jeep
2. Porque é Proibido Pisar Na Grama
3. Cassius Marcelo Clay
4. Cigana
5. Zula
6. Nego é Lindo
7. Comanche
8. Que Maravilha
9. Maria Domingas
10. Palomaris

Link in comments

Categories: 1971, brazil, tropicalia
  1. January 13, 2010 at 12:19 am
  2. January 13, 2010 at 5:00 pm

    you're puttin all ma favorite shit up

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