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Brasil '66 singles

Discussion in 'Look Around: Sergio Mendes/Brazilian Music Forum' started by Harry, Nov 14, 2014.

  1. Bobberman

    Bobberman Well-Known Member

    Very clever in that They tried to duplicate it exactly But the vocalists to me are a Dead giveaway Sergio. Lani and Karen have Distictive voices and this series should have the words "Avoid At All Costs" written all over them.but I have to give Billy May Some Credit For Trying .
  2. Harry

    Harry Charter Member Moderator Thread Starter

    These were likely meant to be used as background music for cocktail parties that the adults had back in the 60s. Rather than a full album by one artist, these would have a bunch of songs that were familiar from radio, TV, etc., played in a similar style to the hit version, and played with the volume turned low. Musical wallpaper.
    Bobberman likes this.
  3. Michael Hagerty

    Michael Hagerty Active Member

    There's nothing like good taste.

    And these albums were nothing like good taste.
    Bobberman and Rudy like this.
  4. Bobberman

    Bobberman Well-Known Member

    I Totally Agree Michael. I first saw these particular LPs at a second hand store in the late 80s I was suspicious immediately and had a gut feeling I should avoid it and this thread Confirmed my younger suspicions and I'm glad I held out for the Real deals
  5. JMK

    JMK Well-Known Member Contributor

    Well, As You Remember Them was a direct result of the huge success of Time-Life's "Swing Era" sets, which offered re-recordings of 1930s through early 1950s material (with one album devoted to Benny Goodman's 70s output), which frankly makes more sense than redoing then relatively recent material. That said, the weird thing about As You Remember Them is that it started as an *instrumental* series (the first several volumes were even branded that way), but they started branching out into vocal "recreations" later, none of which sounded remotely like the originals, at least in terms of the vocalists. I've always wondered how the licensing deals went down with something like this -- wouldn't someone like Grusin have complained about his orchestrations being lifted whole cloth?
  6. Michael Hagerty

    Michael Hagerty Active Member

    Not if he got a cut.
    Bobberman likes this.
  7. Bobberman

    Bobberman Well-Known Member

    It's All about The Licensing.
  8. JMK

    JMK Well-Known Member Contributor

    The economics of this particular series kind of baffle me, since these were all newly done recordings (the Swing Era utilized some Glen Gray stereo recreations of other big bands' hits that had been recorded in the late fifties, along with the newly recorded stuff). You had to pay Billy May, you had to pay all the musicians, you had to do the mechanical royalties and all of that hoohah, and I just have to wonder how they handled the actual original arrangers/orchestrators. I'd love to be able to talk to someone who either knows or maybe even was around during the deal making. Maybe that same person could solve the enduring mystery of Terry Baxter, but I digress. :)
    Intuitive Samba likes this.
  9. Mike Blakesley

    Mike Blakesley Well-Known Member Moderator

    When we sold 8-tracks, I kept seeing "soundalike" tapes with plain-ish labels, but upon listening they were clearly just dubs of the real thing. I got into more than one argument where the customer would say "It's not really Chicago, it just sounds like them" and I would say "Dude, nobody can play guitar like that except Terry Kath" and so on.

    My grandpa had that Swing Era series -- I never realized they were re-recordings.
    Intuitive Samba likes this.
  10. JMK

    JMK Well-Known Member Contributor

    One final comment on that abhorrent You Stepped Out of a Dream -- one of the things I noticed repeatedly on the As You Remember Them versions is that while the orchestral recreations were often spot on (as the Grusin orchestration is -- more or less, anyway -- here), the mixes were often profoundly different. There's a whole emphasis on the midrange instruments on this version that the original doesn't have. Also, whoever "copied" Sergio's brief solo should have practiced a bit more -- his phrasing is completely wrong. That's also unusual, since as mentioned the instrumental/orchestral playing tended to be A+ most of the time.
  11. Out of curiosity, I wish I could hear these, so I could better understand what J.M.K. is saying -- as a reference, at least.
    Mr. JMK sounds like he has high musical standards and a very good ear. I would be intimidated by the prospect of being in a band with him (or on the same stage, in any way, for that matter)!
    Sergio, too, was a demanding, stern band-leader, in his own right -- from what I've gathered.
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2018
  12. I don't know if there's previously been a discussion (on this forum) of the song choices on Brasil '66 records of the dichotomy between the --
    Brasilian songs,
    the (Anglo-)American covers.

    I notice the absence of any Beatle or contemporary American Rock-Pop covers in Brasil '65, or any of Sergio's pre-1966 output.
    I read something about how Lou Adler actually influenced or at least provided some ideas for the direction and formula (approach taken by) Brasil '66. e.g.: songs like: "Going out of My Head"
    I think the arrangement/rendition that Sergio made of "Going Out Of My Head" is quite wonderful and is classic. (It was included on the Greatest Hits compilation.) But, in some ways, I think the original is more moving and powerful with the introduction being the way it is. But both are wonderful. Sergio deliberately chose to start his arrangement on a different section (structural passage) of the song.

    However -- here is my main point -- my guess is that Sergio's musical heart was only really in the Brasilian songs, and not those commercially-motivated choices of Anglo-American cover songs. Maybe those song choices came from Sergio's desire to "break" America, or even commercial pressure from Jerry Moss.

    For example, Sergio's first Beatle cover -- "Day Tripper" -- his piano solo has nothing to do with the song. It isn't based on the harmonic structure (chord changes) of the song. It sounds almost like a Vince Guaraldi solo from that era -- that was pasted into (imposed upon) what is otherwise a Beatle cover. It doesn't seem to fit the Beatle song. But that's just my opinion.
    In my own opinion, a song like "The Word", or even "Drive my Car" would have worked better, musically, for Brasil '66. But those were not singles from the Beatles, so that's why they weren't considered as song choices for B'66. It's pretty obvious that song choices, like those Beatle covers, were based on the fact that a song was a hit single, getting airplay (in the U.S.).

    "Fool on the Hill" ended up being Serigo's most successful, and best-known Beatle cover.

    Maybe Sergio did, in some instances, genuinely like some of those Beatle songs, or at least the Bacharach songs. Perhaps he liked the creative challenge of adapting and re-interpreting and arranging a song.
    Maybe he found musical value in the chord changes -- and at least found interest in approaching the harmonic structure the way a Jazz musician would -- just in terms of harmonic progressions and the possibilities that stem from those.
    And, purely thinking in terms of music, as an arranger, he might have thought -- what can I do with this that will make it interesting and different from the original?

    I think it is fitting that -- to this day -- the song Sergio had the biggest impact with, and that he is still best-known and remember for is "Mas Que Nada."
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2018
  13. JMK

    JMK Well-Known Member Contributor

    Actually, there *is* a Brasil '65 Beatles cover, as I've discussed previously here. It's a really interesting "bridge" from the Atlantic sound to the Brasil '66 sound. Weirdly, the entire single isn't on YouTube, but the following snippet is (with some kind of scary pics of Annamaria Valle LOL):

    Intuitive Samba likes this.

  14. Ooops! --
    I should have scoured Y.T. more before I made that statement about an "abscence of any Beatle covers" pre-1966 by Sergio.

    The You Tube post that JMK pointed to

    is only 1m03s.

    I found what I think is the entire audio of that recording (of "All My Loving").
    In fact, it is posted, alongside the other side of the 45 -- the song that it is backed with ("Telephone Song").

    It's halfway-through, starting at 1m42s

    Is the catalogue number: "45-5056" ?

    "Telephone Song"
    has a number:


    ... Whereas, the flip-side ("All My Lovin'")

  15. Speaking of the Beatles' song "All My Loving" --

    Do you know that Paul McCartney got the beginning of his song's melody (not really intentionally or consciously, but intuitively) from what he remembered hearing in a melodic fragment of Dave Brubeck's piano solo that stood out to him -- near the end, before the drums shift tempo and Paul Desmond starts alto sax soloing --
    @ 26m11s into the album _Time Out_

    "Kathy's Waltz"

    1m02 into the track:

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