Following up on 2009’s “Bossa Nova Stories” (Blue Note), Brazil-born pianist and singer Eliane Elias continues her jazz-oriented blend of originals and Brazilian and American standards, like CD opener “Rosa Morena,” a Dorival Caymmi song that predates the late-1950s bossa nova by a few years. She also revisits classics like Paul Desmond’s “Take Five,” and Stevie Wonder’s “My Cherie Amour” alongside “Aquele Abraco,” an uptempo samba that features its composer, Brazilian songwriter Gilberto Gil.
The CD also includes a very personal and sexy rendition of the Doors’ “Light My Fire,” which gives the album its title. Gilberto Gil also appears on two more tracks, his own “Toda Menina Baiana” and “What About The Heart (Bate Bate),” an original Elias tune co-written with late songwriter Gonzaguinha. Backing her are great players in their own right such as Romero Lubambo (guitar), Oscar Castro-Neves (guitar), husband Marc Johnson (bass) and daughter Amanda Brecker—which makes this one of this year’s most enjoyable jazz records yet. (Ernest Barteldes)
“Light My Fire”