Rozina Pátkai – Você e Eu
Released – September 2013
If you look up the phrase “bossa nova,” along with the word “melancholy,” you get 14 million possibilities. And yet, I’d suggest that “melancholy” is perhaps the wrong word to describe the style. “Indifference, maybe?”
Rozina Pátkai – born in Budapest, Hungary, with Italian roots, embraces the genre with passion (well, as much as it will allow), first making the transition from classical music training: “I got a jazz album from my friend…where I heard such vocals and music that I had never heard before.”
And then to bossa nova as an exchange student in London: “I went to Portobello Road and bought bossa nova albums at the market…I stared to collect them and this is when I fell in love with this genre.”
So complex – this fusion of samba and jazz, yet Ms. Pátkai, winner of last year’s “Independent Music Awards Vox Pop Poll,” is able to convey so much, from plaintive to upbeat, within its narrow confines.
“Chega de Saudade,” translated alternately as “No More Blues,” or “Enough of Longing,” is one of my favorite tracks on this album. The song is generally considered one of the first bossa nova songs, traced back to the late 50s.
Many of the tracks are instantly recognizable – including the requisite “Garota De Ipanema,” and a Spanish “El Hombre Que Yo Ame” (“The Man I Love”), backed with strings from the RTQ String Quartet.
Mátyás Tóth on guitar and Balázs Pecze on trumpet and flugelhorn get some well-deserved showcase time. The rest of the quintet include Márton Soós on bass and Balázs Cseh on drums and percussion.
Ms. Pátkai cites Brazilian singer Rosa Passos as a major influence. Here in the US, perhaps the most famous bossa nova singer is Astrud Gilberto, she of “Girl From Ipanema” fame. Of Ms. Gilberto, critic Scott Yanow says, “…she went remarkably far with a limited voice, a trademark hit, and understated charisma.”
That sells the genre short, I think, which calls for passion within its boundaries. From Wikipedia: “…the word “bossa” is old-fashioned slang for something that is done with particular charm, natural flair or innate ability.”
Closer, I think.
So – is it melancholy, or indifference that makes a good bossa nova?
I think this needs further study. Highest recommendation for this gem.
Note: earlier version indicated Ms. Pátkai was “born in Italy.” Not true. She says, “Although, I wasn’t born in Italy, my grandparents are from Trieste (Italy) and my bio says that I am a ‘singer with Italian origins’, I was born in Budapest (capital of Hungary.)”
Correction noted, with thanks!
Never underestimate the popularity of country music, anywhere in the world. A note from a publicist pal in the UK this week said, “Country/Americana duo Ward Thomas are revealing their brand new video today, so I just wanted to make sure you have it in front of you. They’re twins from Hampshire, with their heads very much in Nashville.”
Sucker that I am for good marketing, it was hard to resist the tagline the search turned up: “We’re country…just a different one.”
This is from an upcoming album – titled, “Footnotes.”