What better way to celebrate the 50th year of bossa nova than by having one legendary Brazilian singer/songwriter (Milton Nascimento) pay homage to the godfather of the genre (Antonio Carlos Jobim) with the help of a trio (Jobim Trio) featuring two Jobim descendants, Daniel (piano) and Paulo (guitar)? Jobim used to say that Nascimento was the only singer capable of reaching the original pitches of his compositions, and the singer does his peer and inspiration proud on the eight playfully seductive classic Jobim tracks that are the core of this historic project. These include the easy loping "Brigas Nunca Mais," the dreamily romantic "Caminhos Cruzados," the lively and swinging dance tune "Chega de Saudade," the understated melancholy jazz trio reflection "Esperanca Perdida," and "Samba Do Aviao" (familiar to fans of the Paraiso Tropical soap opera). Beyond the Jobim classics (which would have made a satisfying celebration even on their own), Nascimento and friends find passion on the soaring opening track "Tudo Que Voce Podia Ser," Daniel Jobim's dreamy, laid-back romance "Dias Azuis," and Nascimento's own lovelorn "Cais" and thoughtful, easily rhythmic "Tarde." The seeds of this historic project were planted in 2007 at the commemorations of Jobim's 80th year, when Nascimento and the trio performed together at Rio's Botanical Garden. Paulo Jobim said of the spontaneously arranged project that grew out of that date: "It was refreshing to revisit this repertoire, which I have known for long -- next to Milton. When Milton sings, music is reborn." That's an inspiring feeling for bossa fans to take with them as the genre forges into its second half century.
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AllMusic Review by Jonathan Widran