Wednesday, April 15, 2009

If You Think ... Roberto Carlos Is Just a Douche

. . . then you haven't been checking the song-writing credits on your favorite artists' best songs. Roberto is the better-known half of one of Brazil's best known and loved songwriting teams. Along with brother - from - another - mother Erasmo, Roberto wrote some classic pop tunes that were covered by a broad spectrum of MPB artists. Today, we're just gonna take one of his songs more popular songs from the late 60s and show you how a wide variety of Brazilian musicians from across the musical spectrum covered this classic jam.

Roberto Carlos - Se Você Pensa
"Se Você Pensa" was originally recorded for Roberto's 1967 album "O Inimitavel". The groove and hook are clearly in place on the original version and both of these elements are experimented with on the subsequent covers. The song is basically an ultimatum to a selfish lover, but I could have the lyrics wrong. For Roberto it's got the best of both worlds: love and anger, both of which he emotes pretty convincingly.

Gal Costa - Se Você Pensa
One of the next cover versions came from the queen of Tropicalia, Gal Costa. You can hear the fuzz quotient getting increased significantly and the aggressive lyrics getting more snarl and bite from the young and adventurous Gal on her first solo album.

Wilson das Neves - Se Você Pensa
Funky drummer Wilson das Neves takes on this classic on his 1969 album and really speeds up the tempo. This is the first of three instrumental covers of this song and you can hear that even in an instrumental the song has legs and can really run!

Eliana Pittman - Se Você Pensa
I had the great pleasure of catching Ms. Pittman perform at a small restaurant / bar in downtown São Paulo back in the summer of 2004. She's a marvelous vocalist that has excelled in the jazz field as well as the samba scene and even doing funkier material. This album from 1969 has her stretching out on her own following the passing of her father, the famous American horn player Booker Pittman, who she recorded with prior to this album. I'm not sure who's playing behind her, but whoever it is THEY SMOKE! Just check out her immaculate phrasing on her cover of today's tune.

Som Tres - Se Você Pensa
Another instrumental groover from the always excellent Som Tres. From the same year as the Eliana and Wilson versions, but with a unique approach nonetheless.

Luiz Eça - Se Você Pensa
There were two versions of this tune by Luiz Eça to choose from, this one and the one from his super-rare Luiz Eça y La Sagrada Familia, which has vocals and was recorded in Mexico. This version opens with a huge drum break and proceeds to jazz it up a bit.

Moraes Moreira - Se Você Pensa
The final version is from several years later, 1975, and was recorded by one of Novos Baianos' frontmen, Moraes Moreira, for his first solo album. He only recorded one cover song on this album and he choose to take on Roberto's iconic tune with a proto-punk high-speed guitar onslaught. This track was also featured on the Brazilian soap opera soundtrack for the show "Pecado Capital."


Simon666 said...

Great post! Had the Luiz Eça and great to hear the rest, thankyou :)

Dan Shurley said...

obrigado soul spectrum!

Josh Nice said...

proto-punk? more like straight-up prog! i love that version.

paulomi said...

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