Black Orpheus Orfeu Negro The Original Sound Track From The Film
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This impressionistic score from Marcel Camus's 1958 cinematic retelling of the Greek myth of Orpheus was most Americans' introduction to the Brazilian musical style called bossa nova. As it became a nationwide craze that featured both Brazilian samba and U.S. cool-jazz participants, the names of Black Orpheus composers Antonio Carlos Jobim and Luiz Bonfa became familiar far beyond the hi-fi set. Along with the haunting theme song, "Manha de Carnaval," and several Jobim compositions are the vibrant street sounds of the pre-Lenten festival Carnaval, which provides the backdrop to the tragic love story of Orpheus and Eurydice. The score is awash with percussive samba rhythms and the laughter and chanting of the annual festival melee. This is a great disc to play when the day needs a parade. --Lois Maffeo
Top customer reviews
I saw the movie four times shortly after it won the award - in the early 60's - and since then, I've seen it countless times on DVD. I'll continue to do so for the rest of my life.
I am passionate about Brasil, the music of Brasil, it's culture and the people. It's a very special part of the world.
So, how did I find the sound track album of Black Orpheus.
I found it hypnotic.
Ranging through soft, sometimes sad songs, to the wild and infectious sounds of the carnival, this CD brings Brasil into your living room.
My two favourite tracks are A Felicidade and Manha de Carneval.
The incredibly beautiful music on this CD will take you on an emotional trip ranging from melancholia to ecstatic joy. It's a wonderful mixture of Samba and Bossa Nova.
One moment you'll have tears in your eyes, the next, you'll want to get up and samba like you've never done before !
The sounds of Brasil and it's people occupy every track and you will wish somehow you could be transported there right now so you can not only hear this extraordinary music live, but you could also experience the smells of Rio and the carnival....
I've never listened to a CD that captures the sights and sounds of a country as perfectly as does this sound track of Black Orpheus.
Let's call it by its Portuguese title, Orfeu Negro. It adds to the magic.
As the years goes by this CD will slowly fade away and the only copies available will be classified as rare and collectible at an appropriate price.
Don't wait. Get a copy now and be captivated by its sheer beauty.
"The 1st Orpheus album sounds like Chicago (Transit Authority) several years before they made the scene. (Did CTA get the idea for their original name from the earlier San Francisco R+B band Pacific Gas & Electric - one was a public utility, the other public transit, both with rather long names.)
Despite the fact that Orpheus was from Boston, not Chicago - the Buckinghams, the Cryan Shames, New Colony Six are other Chicago bands of the time that come to mind. Lots of horns and/or electric pianos, rock and jazz organs, clean guitar, even orchestral strings, depending on the given song.
But Orpheus' lyrics were often an altogether different sort of animal.
It's as if Orpheus was in the business of refining and deepening, and, yes - giving an underground edge to the obvious pop ethos of the time. In New York, Circus Maximus (Bob Bruno, Jerry Jeff Walker and their amazing band mates) were also strenuously transforming our understanding of the styles of pop/rock during this period. Also working in relative obscurity, they were less mellow, more attacking - but just as otherworldly, often with an unbelievably intense allegorical edge. CM of course started out dabbling brilliantly in folk-rock and early punk, but traversed at least 7-8 styles by the time they were through - jazz-rock, soft rock, flower-power, visionary folk-pop, acid-rock, acid-punk - all this in the space of only two albums!
Orpheus was decidedly not a `rock' band, though fitting in the overall category of rock music, which hadn't yet splintered (in the public mind) into the plethora of genres and sub-genres. Like the band's namesake (Orpheus the hero/demigod of the Greek legends), they traveled into the underworld to seek their lost loves/souls, and eventually emerged still wearing the mantle of convention. But those clothes now had maps etched indelibly onto the surface of their fabrics - everyone who gave a careful listen could not help but being swept up in what was beginning to be trumpeted and/or breathed to/through them.
This was quietly, powerfully heralded (musically) only on the final cut of album #1; but becomes more and more obvious in the 2nd album.
On the 3rd album, many songs remind one stylistically of the Association's album cuts, but with good arrangers and engineers. The Association had it all on their singles, and almost nothing on their other songs. And it probably wasn't any of their fault - chalk it up to a nearsighted, baffled producer.
There's also a bit of the smoother edge of Motown running through the 3rd's veins, maybe even a glimmer of things like the Fifth Dimension. And don't forget Glen Campbell in his more philosophically-revealing moments.
The 4th album on the other hand turns musically very philosophical/psychological, even visionary/spiritual (the lyrics had been that way intermittently all along). Orpheus' new band member wrote almost all the songs on #4 and sang/projected them not too unlike Tim Buckley, but with a voice and intent that overtakes and draws you in rather than smashes/bleats/blares at you. Very steadying even while being charismatic and impregnating. Rather sparely arranged, with lots of acoustic guitar, hinting by turns at blues, folk and psychedelia but studiously keeping apart from any stock "sound of the times". As virile and deep as the whole movement, yet seemingly employing a tender, personal grasp of the listener's heart and mind.
Imagine someone in your small living room at twilight, strumming and singing just to you and for you. The effect is startlingly refreshing, engaging in an almost aboriginal manner, friendly to an extreme degree. There are hints/gleanings of some kind of incoming personal revelation. Your eyes begin to take on/in more light.
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Produced By Alan Lorber
This Best Of Orpheus collection honors 40 years-after the vital and unique creative contributions made to the group by...Read more