In celebration of Pablo Neruda's 100th Birthday, the exceptional vocalist and composer Luciana Souza comes with her latest recording on Sunnyside. Neruda is Luciana's setting of 10 poems, translated into English, orchestrated for piano, voice, and percussion. Her two recent recordings, Brazilian Duos, and North & South, have brought her Grammy nominations in the Best Vocal Jazz Album category. For this project Luciana was inspired by the music of Catalan composer Federico Mompou and the poems of the Nobel Prize winner. In this setting, Luciana plays percussion and sings with her incomparable sound and emotional range, accompanied by Edward Simon on piano. The New York Times raves, "[Souza] makes good singing seem incredibly easy...she applies a touch of jazz technique... with bounding improvisations."
The wonderful musicianship of pianist Edward Simon was a vital contribution to this project. Voice and piano were recorded live, and later Luciana overdubbed the percussions.
This year 2004 marks the 100th birthday of Pablo Neruda. April is poetry month.
Reviews"If Luciana did nothing more than sing, she'd still be a miracle. But she also writes music, sometimes to her own graceful words, sometimes to those of poets who catch her curious ear. Neruda is an hour-long song cycle based on the poetry of Pablo Neruda and the piano pieces of Federico Mompou, sung in her Brazil-perfumed English (a language she speaks with the freshness and surprise of an explorer charting a new world) and as uncategorizably protean as everything else she does." - Terry Teachout, Wall Street Journal Top Ten Albums of 2004