Music for Grownups

      Music for Grownups

    Hungry for some truly original Brazilian music? Go listen to Arthur
    de Faria’s latest CD, Música Pra Gente Grande. This Gaúcho
    (from Rio Grande do Sul state) musician isn’t offering the same old
    stuff. It’s real art, not just well-produced craftsmanship.

    By
    Fabiano Golgo

    How often can you say the CD you are listening to is more than just
    another piece manufactured or electronicfactured for your easy swallowing
    — following that ol’ rule of repeating what has already been created—this
    time by someone with more original talents? Fourteen times, in my case,
    only within two days.

    Wait. Don’t try, you, thirsty for good sounds, to find my E-mail address
    to request the name of these dozen plus names. It is a single piece of
    art that inhabited my stereo for a couple of days and seemed to not want
    to leave. And that is because I am a true lover of art. As in original.
    Not as in good craft. And we need to make the distinction between art and
    craft. Let’s face it: many people can draw cubist influenced pictures nowadays,
    but Picasso showed how in the first place. Anyone can make rhymes on the
    Jobim or Vinicius’ style — but who introduced the marvel to us?? And to
    the world, for that matter?

    Well, don’t rush. I will tell you the name of this finding. Yes, finding.
    Because, like most talents, it comes from an unexpected place and has no
    big pop machine backing its release. But, first, go into that area in your
    gray matter that stores the good things that life has to offer. There yet?
    Well, when was the last time a new name entered it as being truly original,
    pure, humorous and sensual Brazilian music? And played by a real musician
    and his real musician friends—with names, not numbers)?

    Oh, ok: you are remembering that Caetano, or that solo by that great
    former band member who had full reasons to show you what he/she /it had
    best. All right, there are plenty of authors in our “verde-amarelo”
    repertoire to make us proud to be from the Pátria Amada
    (Beloved Country). But is this list of a recent (green-yellow—the national
    colors) season? Or a compilation of well-endowed names, for long making
    our intimate moments more intimate, giving our “get-togethers” a better
    ambiance?

    Now, let me get deeper, and more anal: which one of them had a great
    set of pieces of varied—truly varied— sound styles, with real swift lyrics
    and elegy? Which was celebrated by the national unanimity—one of the few
    unanimities that is not stupid: writer Luís Fernando Veríssimo,
    to cite only one? Which was played homage to by a radio station in the
    city where whoever isn’t a musician is a tourist: Prague?

    If you want to hear a sincere scorn on the capabilities of our average
    musician, please go get Música Pra Gente Grande, by Arthur
    de Faria. And don’t shy away because of the title—a paradox remnant of
    that Sunday morning hour of Concertos Para a Juventude (Concerts
    for the Youth). And it is not necessary to be “gente grande” (grown-up
    person) to listen to this CD. You will become one afterwards, at least
    musically.

    Arthur offers this blind date with the widest ebb of genres in his typical
    childish maturity. Like an unpretentious “Gaúcho” (that is
    possible, sometimes), he spreads his years of music knowledge with a flagrant
    sensuality and the fluency of an outrageous flexibility that you haven’t—and
    can’t—find in the current constellation of artists. It was necessary for
    someone with the sole ambition of making something good (let’s put it in
    capital letters, if you will: GOOD!) so that we could have this witty extravaganza
    that not only compellingly advocates the Brazilian true sounds, but stylishly
    contributes another few to them.

    When you listen to Arthur’s work you will find that it isn’t just another
    version of the good old stuff you love. You will find originality at its
    most, a satire that stings, a warm ductile length of lyrical spins you
    are not used to, and will be besotted by a soft vibration that is acquiescing
    in a sanity that our latest media-celebrated offspring has not, and will
    never, achieve.

    Replete with styles we would be otherwise afraid of or unprepared for,
    like waltzes (in a way grandma would never imagine, but would certainly
    enjoy as well), cantiga de roda (for the wise ones), choro-canção
    (originality, anyone?), samba (not from Som Livre, that is), milonga
    (for all nationalities outside the Pampas, too), baião (by
    a Gaúcho: don’t miss it!), corta-jaca (check it, I
    can’t explain…), and even covers that won’t disappoint. Performed by
    a population of instruments that goes from the pocket latophone
    to the fagote, the banjo and the trombone, a sax alto, mandolin,
    drums and other percussion instruments, plus the homey piano and Verbosis
    of Arthur himself. For those who need to categorize, there could be comparisons
    to the old sambistas de bar, to Arnaldo Antunes in a Gilberto Gil
    mood, or a drunk Jobim, also a tropical Badalamenti, even a crazier Noel
    Rosa… who knows?

    For me, it’s a pledge for good sense in music, a graphic verve for the
    non and initiate alike. It is something that can be listened by the widest
    array of tastes. It smoothes out all distress without the need for dimming
    the lights, it speeds the brain without the pretension of the professional
    anarch-artist, it adds to our feelings without tiring our patience and
    gives us the opportunity to dive into the classical without having to make
    up for the sleepy parts… It is a creation, not a release. Something that
    will endure. Like it or not, mass-media-oriented consumers.

    You can contact the author, Fabiano Golgo, through
    his E-mail: fgolgo@hotmail.com

    Information about the CD can be obtained at 107.1@ulbra.tche.br,
    the E-mail of musician Arthur de Faria.

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