BRAZILIAN MUSICAL ICON SERGIO MENDES CELEBRATES 50 YEARS
OF RECORDING WITH FIRST MAJOR RETROSPECTIVE
TWO-CD CELEBRATION: A MUSICAL JOURNEY
Whether economically or culturally, Brazil is hot! For Sergio Mendes, Brazil’s most popular musical export, the time has arrived for his music to be featured in a major motion 3-D animated picture and his first career retrospective. Marking the 50th anniversary of his debut album, the two-CD Celebration: A Musical Journey (Emarcy/Verve), released in 2011, brings together more than three dozen selections spanning the entire career of the master of the bossa nova beat. The collection ranges from the classic “The Look Of Love” to recent collaborations with will.i.am and The Black Eyed Peas (“Mas Que Nada” is featured on the soundtrack to the 3-D animation feature RIO) to new recordings guesting Siedah Garrett and Ivete Sangalo.
Celebration: A Musical Journey’s earliest tracks were culled from 1961’s Dance Moderno and groups Bossa Rio and the Sergio Mendes Trio. But it was Sergio Mendes and Brasil ’66 which sparked global stardom. Performing “The Look Of Love” at the 1968 Oscars, their version went Top 10, quickly followed by the hits “The Fool On The Hill” and “Scarborough Fair.” Enjoying immense popularity, Mendes added soul and funk to his jazz and pop, but always with a Brazilian rhythm. In the ’80s, he scored with the Adult Contemporary #1 and pop Top 10 “Never Gonna Let You Go” and in 1992 won a Grammy for Brasileiro. From the 60s to now, Mendes and his cool factor is ever present.
In 2006, his CD, Timeless, spotlighted hip-hop artists, including The Black Eyed Peas with a re-recording of early gem “Mas Que Nada” alongside Gracinha Leporace, Mendes’ wife. 2008’s Encanto found neo-soulster Ledisi and Spanish-language favorite Juanes as guests. Adding new recordings with Sangalo and Garrett, among them a remake of “The Fool On The Hill,” Celebration: A Musical Journey brings up to date the extraordinary career of Sergio Mendes.