Singer Olivia Hime is both an alluring performer and a great promoter of classic and modern Brazilian music. Through her thriving independent label, Biscoito Fino, she has produced and released dozens of albums by old-guard artists and lesser-known newcomers. Her husband, Francis Hime, is also a respected composer and arranger of classic, bossa-tinged MPB. Here's a quick look at her work...
Olivia Hime "Olivia Hime" (RGE, 1981)
Olivia Hime "Segredo Do Meu Coracao" (Columbia-Opus, 1982)
Olivia Hime "Mascara" (Columbia-Opus, 1983)
Olivia Hime "O Fio De Meada" (Columbia-Opus, 1985)
Olivia Hime/Various Artists "Estrela Da Vida Inteira Manuel Bandeira" (Continental, 1987/Biscoito Fino, 2001)
Perhaps her most ornate album, this set includes versions written by an all-star cast of the Brazilian pop elite: Gilberto Gil, Milton Nascimento, Ivan Lins, Dorival Caymmi and others. The approach is strictly sleek, lush, sophisticated, high-gloss, jazzy MPB, the kind of music listeners either love or hate. It's not my favorite style, but folks who go for this will certainly enjoy this album; Hime's voice sound particularly lovely amid these lavish arrangements.
Olivia Hime "Cancao Transparente" (Paradoxx, 1997/Biscoito Fino, 2004)
Olivia Hime "Serenate De Uma Mulher: Olivia Hime Canta Chiquinha Gonzaga" (Rioarte, 1998/Biscoito Fino, 2002)
An elegant MPB update of the classic compositions of one of Brazilian music's most important female artists, choro pioneer Chiquinha Gonzaga, who was one of the most prolific songwriters of the first third of the 20th Century. This disc only has a dozen of Gonzaga's compositions -- a scant sampling of the hundreds of possible candidates -- but the performances are uniformly pleasant, and folks unfamiliar with Gonzaga's legacy will appreciate the window into her work. Nice album, with tasteful arrangements and lovely vocals.
Olivia Hime "Mar De Algodao: As Marinhas De Caymmi" (Biscoito Fino, 2002)
A tribute to the songwriting of popular samba composer Dorival Caymmi, whose attachment to and reverence for the sea was legendary. This album is conceived as a series of song-cycles: the sea in the morning, the sea by day, the sea at night. In some places the baroque arrangements are fairly unconventional; in others Hime displays a markedly formalist MPB approach -- very ornate, refined and sugary sweet. Her own, rather understated vocals are close in temprament to Caymmi's own plainspoken singing style. Rodolfo Stroeter produced and engineered the album; Olivia and Francis Hime wrote the arrangements, with Tutty Moreno, Sergio Santos and others performing throughout.
Olivia Hime "Alta Madrugada" (Biscoito Fino, 2004)
Olivia Hime "Palavras Da Guerra" (Biscoito Fino, 2007)
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