Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, live sessions and more!
Start Your Free Trial

Gilberto Gil: Me, You, Them (Soundtrack)

Gilberto Gil is one of the founding fathers of the innovative tropicalia movement of the ’60s whose work continues to captivate and redefine what we think of as endemically Brazilian music. Neither he nor old tropicalia cohort Caetano Veloso are about to settle into a happy, predictable rut. Both have been notching up their musical ambitions in recent years, and that goes for their film music work, as well: Veloso’s score for Orfeu seized the ear and head, and Gil’s buoyant musical concepts for the film Me, You, Them (Atlantic 83430; 48:07) amount to anything but a toss-off or a score yielding to the primacy of the image. Director Andrucha Waddington’s film, a whimsical tale of a woman and her three husbands, has gotten a good buzz at festivals and was Brazil’s official Academy Award entry. The collaboration with Gil was a natural, given Waddington’s documentary on the singer in 1996.

Generally, the music is a melodic spree with some delightful textural quirks: spirited flutes (on “Baiao da Penha”), slide guitars, a subtle complement of percussion, friendly accordion parts, honeycomb vocal parts and other treats surround Gil’s sweet voice. Just try not to warm up to the hook-laden “Esperando na Janela,” a hit in Brazil

Originally Published