Oscar Castro-Neves/Paul Winter: Brazilian Days

Brazilian Days is a reunion of sorts. Brazilian guitarist Oscar Castro Neves and tenor sax player Paul Winter first played together in the Paul Winter Consort during the late ’60s. Some 30 years later the two consulted Almir Chediak, a prominent Brazilian publisher who created a prodigious number of volumes of Brazilian popular songs. With his help, they assembled the pieces for this recording. In a quartet format, the guitarist and horn player explore the works of Brazilian heavy-hitters: Antonio Carlos Jobim (of course), Carlos Lyra, Edu Lbo, and Vinicius de Moraes. The latter’s play, Black Orpheus, spearheaded the bossa nova movement of the ’60s; he afterwards wrote the lyrics to “The Girl From Ipanema.”

The sound of Brazilian Days is bit unusual-one doesn’t immediately associate the inimitable soprano sax sound of Paul Winter with the cool sound of bossa nova. But it is heartfelt, and deeply Brazilian in feeling. We can thank God that bossa nova survived the cocktail lounge.