A "Mas Que Nada" cover...pass the discomfort bag!

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Rudy

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For some masochistic reason, I switched to our local $$moooooth Jazz station, and stumbled across a cover of "Mas Que Nada". I'm very surprised their "DJs-R-Us" actually knew it was a Brasil 66 a long time (although she falsely stated they originated it...they didn't, they just popularized it). This version was by Marc Antoine...and I wanted to gag it was so horrible. I'd heard a Marc Antoine CD awhile ago, probably his debut, and it wasn't bad. He *can* play. But this cover version is a typical example of what is wrong with $$mmoooooth Jazz in the first place--the backing music for this track was sickeningly bland! This is like the Brasil '66 but with every single ounce of emotion and feeling removed from it. Your typical programmed percussion, bland accompaniment, and female vocals that sounded like they were sleepwalking thru the performance. Terrible...a shame, and an nsult to the original. And IMHO, a waste of Antoine's talents...he's capable of a LOT better than ripping off old songs set to a generic background.

Egads...now some lame-assed saxophone player is destroying Brubeck's "Take 5". Frickin' drum machines!! :cussing: Can't these no-talent industry stooges play something beside JUST THE NOTES?? And what the heck are stupid VOCALS doing in this mess? Gads this SUCKS!! Better turn this off before I have a stroke!! THe only good thing is Brubeck makes a few bucks from leasing this one out. I hope he never has to hear it!

Only thing I can say is that I think this station is going away. I see them as being in the desperation stage to save listeners--they've been adding pop and rock to the playlist. I've heard Doobies, Steely Dan, Hall & Oates, and other "Lite Rock" songs being thrown in. Same moves I've heard from other stations in the last few months of their existence.

Just a rant for the day...and unfortuately it had a Mendes connection. :sad:
 

JMK

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Rudy said:
Egads...now some lame-assed saxophone player is destroying Brubeck's "Take 5". Frickin' drum machines!! :cussing: Can't these no-talent industry stooges play something beside JUST THE NOTES?? And what the heck are stupid VOCALS doing in this mess? Gads this SUCKS!! Better turn this off before I have a stroke!! THe only good thing is Brubeck makes a few bucks from leasing this one out. I hope he never has to hear it!

But what do you really think :tongue: ? Actually, it would be the estate of Paul Desmond that is making the bucks off of a cover tune--he was the writer (and another A&M connection, at that).
 

Jilanha

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Rudy said:
Egads...now some lame-assed saxophone player is destroying Brubeck's "Take 5". Frickin' drum machines!! :cussing: Can't these no-talent industry stooges play something beside JUST THE NOTES?? And what the heck are stupid VOCALS doing in this mess? Gads this SUCKS!! Better turn this off before I have a stroke!! THe only good thing is Brubeck makes a few bucks from leasing this one out. I hope he never has to hear it! :sad:
The saxophone player that you're speaking of would be the LATE GREAT GROVER WASHINGTON JR.I'm not too fond of Grover's version of Take 5, but that's no excuse to call the legend lame-assed.What is wrong with this forum? First it's Kenny G, now it's Grover Washington Jr. Hasn't anyone in this forum know the word RESPECT?
 

Jilanha

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Over the years , i have listened to several renditions of Mas Que Nada.My favorite is the one from Sergio's ARARA(1989). My least favorite is on Lani's BRASIL NATIVO(1998). Marc Antione is a great artist, but his Mas Que Nada is too laidback, the singers sound DROWSY!
 

vinman37

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We have the same Smooth Jazz problem here in NY too. Marc really ruined Mas Que Nada big time although I do agree that he is a great musician. As far as Take5 goes, there are versions other than Grover's out there. I think Grover does a nice job, but there is one version that sounds like it is totally computer generated. Yuk!

Can anyone name all of the Sergio albums that Mas Que Nada are on?
 

Brasil_Nut

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I'll stick with Sergio's original version of Mas Que Nada found on Herb Alpert Presents Sergio Mendes & Brasil '66. The updated version on Arara is great - similar to how it's performed on stage - but it doesn't have the charm and sophistication found on HAP (IMHO). :wink:

As for Lani's reading on Brasil Nativo, it's interesting. A twist on the usual upbeat arrangement given to the song. My favorite version (from a Lani Hall solo-based angle) is found on her Latin Lp Lani as part of the Sergio Mendes Medley. I love that album and the medley. I recall hearing it for the first time and thinking, "How sensational that Lani should pay tribute to Sergio - take him along on her Latin-influenced solo career..." That's happiness!! :)

Jon...the "Brasil Nut"
 

Jilanha

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I really enjoy listening to Lani Hall's Sergio Mendes medley too. The medley includes Mas Que Nada, Fool On The Hill, Spanish Flea, O Pato, Laia Ladaia(Reza),etc. Lani sings the tribute medley to Sergio Mendes so beautifully! Has anyone listened to Al Jarreau's version of Mas Que Nada? How about L.A. Transit featuring Carol Rogers? Ithamara Koorax? Miriam Makeba? Milton Nascimento?Count Basie?Dom Um Romao? Ella Fitzgerald? Ella's version is sung with ENGLISH lyrics. :oops: With all due respect to Ella, I can't stand the ENGLISH version of Mas Que Nada! SORRY ELLA!
 

Jilanha

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Mas Que Nada on LIVE AT EXPO is crazy because Sergio, Sebastiao, Dom, & Rubens are playing so wonderfully, but Lani, & Karen are singing off-key. you can really tell that the ladies are worn out, especially when it comes to the part where they sing Ooooooohhh....! They sound horrible.
 

Captaindave

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I do not like drum machines either. You can alway tell when you hear a recording with the machines. Very "disco." Very "rap." (Two "styles" - being very kind here - that are big offenders).

I also do not like human drummers who are in a state of "role confusion." By that I mean always seeing the drums set as a "solo" instrument. That is what I really liked about Nick Ceroli. He "tied it down" so to speak, so the rest of the band could actually play and not be constantly "at war" with the drummer over who was in charge, so to speak. The beat was "set" and that was it. He would stay on the beat consistently, not constantly speeding up and slowing down, or throwing in all kinds of runs and flourishes like so many drummers tend to do - just a nice, tight, solid beat.

I think some people who take up the drums made an error in choice of instrument back at the start of their musical career. I don't think that just anyone should be a drummer. I have played with very few who were what I would call really good drummers. I think it takes something special back there to get it right. Ceroli had it down like few others ever do. To me, he remains what drumming is all about...just lay it down and keep it there...

Just my opinion.... :D
 

Rudy

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vinman37 said:
We have the same Smooth Jazz problem here in NY too. Marc really ruined Mas Que Nada big time although I do agree that he is a great musician. As far as Take5 goes, there are versions other than Grover's out there. I think Grover does a nice job, but there is one version that sounds like it is totally computer generated. Yuk!

That's probably the one I'm thinking of...I don't think even Grover would stoop to such a low level. (Grover was good, but was far better before this Smoothie crap ruined jazz.) The version I heard yesterday was so mechanical and lifeless...its was horrid. The female singers were just the bitter frosting on a terrible cake.
 

JMK

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I forgot to mention yesterday--there's actually an incredibly bad drum-machine/synth version of Take 5 in 4/4 that got some airplay in these parts a few years ago!! How stupid is that? It's like that reworking of the Mission Impossible theme into 4/4 when the movie came out. Give me a break. :rolleyes:
 

Rudy

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Jilanha said:
The saxophone player that you're speaking of would be the LATE GREAT GROVER WASHINGTON JR.I'm not too fond of Grover's version of Take 5, but that's no excuse to call the legend lame-assed.What is wrong with this forum? First it's Kenny G, now it's Grover Washington Jr. Hasn't anyone in this forum know the word RESPECT?

Stop the personal attacks and bitching. I'm giving you time off from the forum with a suspension so you can think about behaving like an adult. You need to learn to respect others' opinions before hitting the keyboard. I'm tired of dealing with all the complaints and private messages about your behavior here, thank you very much.

And don't bother trying to sign up with a duplicate name like last time either...we're watching you, 'RIo Gal".
 

Rudy

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Captaindave said:
I do not like drum machines either. You can alway tell when you hear a recording with the machines. Very "disco." Very "rap." (Two "styles" - being very kind here - that are big offenders).

With those $moothies, it's always the exact same tired hip-hop beat they've been using for the past ten or more years. I think it all boils down to the same common denominator as pop music. In this case, they find musicians with enough talent to carry a tune, with reasonably good Yuppie-friendly looks, and add enough generic talent in the background to fit the format. Same as boy bands and bare midriffs sing along to that manufactured "synth" music. Point is--it's cheap to make, and easy to reproduce. And it sells.

My biggest complaint is over how little SOUL there is to the entire format. I just hear note playing--I hear no emotion anymore. And noodling is NOT improvising. Big deal...even someone as technically deficient as Kenny G can play scales, but that does not make music. A few of the contemporary oldtimers like Sanborn and David Benoit are making decent music, but any of these recent $mooth Jazz $tar$ are all from the same blandness mold. A good career move moneywise, but those without serious chops will just fall by the wayside in a few years, while those with talent will move on.

It just burns me up to hear such music exploiting classic songs. Bill Withers' "Use Me", the aforementioned "Mas Que Nada" and "Take Five", and any other favorite song I grew up with (jazz, pop or R&B) being used as cover material just rubs me the wrong way. In the 60's, it was common for jazz and instrumental artists to cover songs, and yet put their unique spin on them. The talent was in the arranging. Today, it just reeks of exploitation. "It'll sell the CD if we throw a Bill Withers song on here!" I think the worst was Kenny G. piling his dreck on top of Louis Armstrong...that rubbed just about ALL jazz fans the wrong way, and I really got a charge out of Pat Metheny's diatribe, which spoke for the jazz *performing* community, not just the fans who somehow got to hear that musical nepotism.

I'm not hard on the drum machine per se--there are plenty of recordings out there that use them which I am very fond of. But when they're SO overused, I can't help but hold them in contempt. It goes beyond being artistic into being pure unadulterated production. It's cheaper than a drummer, and more predictable. :)
 

alpertfan

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What's your problem? I own the CD that that version comes off of( it's called CRUISIN' for anyone's interest.) I think it's a great version of the song, and I think it's more Latin-sounding than smooth jazz, even though Marc Antoine is categorized as a smooth jazz musician, I also think his music could fit in the Latin genre because you not only have that great Spanish guitar of his, but you've got authentic Latin rhythm. I think people expect that covers of popular songs will magically sound the same as the original. Wake up! Nothing can ever be copied. Many covers of various songs do stink, but this is not one of them. And regarding "Take Five"-I love that version by the G-Man! They play it constantly on CD 101.9 and if you're in the room, you'll catch me playing "air sax" to it as with his version of, "Soulful Strut". I also equally love the original by the DBQ, and agree that nothing can top it, but it wouldn't be fair to call Washington's cover of it as something to hurl about!

-alpertfan...saying, "Take a chill pill and stop dissing smooth jazz and those who appreciate it!" :evil:
 

Rudy

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Thread's locked...sorry that I'm not entitled to an opinion...
 
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