Walking with My Bass
I consider myself a lucky man. My love of music started at an early age listening to music at home. My parents, Andre and Rosa Matta loved to have a good time. They had a great collection of albums, mostly American, Cuban and of course, Brazilian music. In the quieter moments when my mother played Chopin and Debussy on the piano I would tell her the parts that interested me. "You like the bass", she'd say. In the music store I fell in love with the look of the acoustic bass and we brought it home. I was ten years old. My brother Andre played the drums and he asked me to play in his band. Since then playing the bass has taken me on a journey that I could not have imagined. I have traveled all over the world and been blessed to have been surrounded by great people. This project isn't different. It represents a little bit of my musical life and expresses my gratitude to the artists that I have shared this life with so far. I have worked with all but one of the musicians on this CD in concerts or on recordings over the last thirty years or more. I would like to thank these unbelievable artists from the bottom of my heart, for playing my arrangements, listening to my ideas, and helping me to put this music together. All my love to them for helping me make this project happen. SONGS Nanã - I have loved this song for more than 30 years. I remember when I was 16 and listening to the great drummer Edison Machado playing this song with so much feeling. I'm so happy I was able to record it with Claudio Roditi, Paulo Braga, Vic Juris, Helio Alves, Anne Drumond and Jorjão. Their playing was fantastic. - This is also my homage to the great composer, maestro, educator and mentor of many great musicians from Brazil, Moacir Santos. Atlantida - It was a great moment for me when I called Ivan Lins at his home in Rio to invite him to record with me and to hear him respond immediately, "Let's record, I have a song for us." We Brazilians are blessed to have this great composer born in our country. I've known Ivan since the 70's, when I was playing with Chico Buarque and MPB-4, and there were those encounters at concerts, TV shows and on the beach. At that time if you wanted to see musicians, singers, actors, artists in general, you would go to Ipanema Beach. It was a wonderful time in Rio which we all, I believe, miss a lot. Ivan brought two great musicians to our session, the drummer Theo Lima and guitar player Leonardo Aumoedo. This beautiful song that Ivan composed was performed with a lot of emotion and love. Berimbau / Here's That Rainy Day When my producer Tony Spaneo suggested Berimbau I agreed right away because it's one of my favorite Baden Powell songs and it's a perfect fit for the bass. Rainy Day is another one of my favorites. To have Kenny Baron on this album is something very important to me not only because he is considered one of the greatest piano players in the history of jazz, but because he is a great friend, as is his lovely wife Joanne. We have worked together for three years with Trio da Paz traveling all over the world. I really enjoy the afternoons our families get together for Brazilian/American BBQ. I am pleased to have Jeff Tain Watts on drums. He is the only musician on the CD that I am working with for the first time. His playing brings an important integration of cultures to this project. Jorje Silva, my dear friend, plays percussion here with a lot of heart and Carioca taste. Bossa for Copacabana Copacabana, for me, is the most beautiful beach in the world. The first time I saw it I was ten years old. Coming from Sao Paulo, I found it an amazing place. I moved to Rio in 1970 to live in Copacabana and it was there that I met my beautiful wife Luisa. This song is dedicated to Copacabana for the great moments of the past and the great times in the future we'll have there. I Only Have Eyes For You - Joyce and Tutti Moreno - a perfect couple. We have been friends for such a long time. I remember the day we had a rehearsal to record this song in their beautiful apartment in Rio. After we had gone over the music Joyce said, "Let's eat". They served delicious Brazilian food. Thanks Joyce and Tutti for your incredible talent, for the great lunch and contribution to this recording. Jade - I played in Joao Bosco's band for 2 years and it was an incredible experience. We became friends the first day we met. Playing with João always takes you on a great voyage. He is the type of guy who likes to be prepared but when we start to play something spiritual happens and the playing is so free. It's an honor for me to have him on this record. - I'm also happy to have two great musicians on this recording, my old friend and fantastic drummer Paulo Braga and a new friend and great talent, guitarist Guilherme Monteiro. Perfume de Cebola - Filo Machado and the one and only Robertinho Silva. We recorded this song in Rio de Janeiro, and the combination of summer time and two masters in samba swing was just perfect. After we finished recording this incredible composition by Filo, my body kept swinging for days. Samba Sem Voce - I have been a fan of Rosa Passos since I first heard her voice coming through my car radio in 1980. It was one of those great musical moments. Years later Rosa was the special guest at two great concerts that I was performing at, one in Los Angeles at the Hollywood Bowl and the other at the Bern Jazz Festival, Switzerland. One day I received a call from virtuoso cello player Yo-Yo Ma asking me to play on his recording of Brazilian music. When I got to the studio I had a surprise, Rosa was one of the guests. With Yo Yo we recorded two Grammy winning CDs and traveled all over the world together, we always have such a good time. - Valtinho Anastacio is playing percussion with us on this composition by Rosa. He has a magic touch! We've been friends since we meet in Japan in 1983 and I admire his playing a lot. Take The A Train / Smile -Talking about virtuosos, Mauricio Einhorn is surely one. He's also fun to be around because he's a master joke teller. My producer wanted something different for the album. I called Mauricio in Rio and invited him to record and he accepted right away. He asked me who else was with us and I said Duduka da Fonseca on drums... My wife was listening to the conversation and said, "That's all, just the three of you. This will sound different." So thank you Luisa, Mauricio and Duduka! - Duduka and I are partners in Trio da Paz together with my friend Romero Lubambo and I'm so glad Duduka was in Rio while I was recording. His samba playing was masterful and gave us the foundation that allowed the three of us to play so creatively. Night and Day - What a great composition by Cole Porter. I wrote this arrangement the night before we recorded specifically for Cyro Baptista, Harry Allen and Anne Drummond. I didn't have any idea how the arrangement would sound. The producer Tony and engineer Michael Brorby were also wondering. After explaining my ideas we played through the arrangement and I decided to record right away. The first take was great. Anne, who thought we were still rehearsing, said, "Let's record now". I replied, "We already did", and that's the take you'll hear on this CD. Creek - This song was composed by the great sax player from Brazil, Victor Assis Brasil. He left us many beautiful compositions. I love this song and this is my tribute to him. Nilson Matta's got plenty of great musical friends in this world -- and thankfully, a good number of them showed up in the studio to help him with this batch of Brazilian-tinged jazz tunes! The record's overflowing with great contributions from a lineup of players that includes Brazilian artists Rosa Passos, Ivan Lins, Joyce, Joao Bosco, Mauricio Einhorn, Filó Machado,Cyro Baptista, Robertinho Silva and Duduka Da Fonseca -- as well as American jazzmen Kenny Barron, Harry Allen,Vic Jurys, Anne Drummond and Jeff Tain Watts and many more!-- and throughout it all, Nilson's at the helm, working in round, warm acoustic bass lines and solos that tie together the talents and styles present on the record. Most arrangements are by Matta, but Ivan Lins, Joyce, and Joao Bosco helped out a bit too -- and titles include 'Nana', 'Berimbau', 'Night & Day', 'Creek', 'Samba Sem Voce', 'Jade', 'Perfume De Cebola', 'Here's that rainy Day' and 'I Only Have Eyes For You', sung in English by Joyce!