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” Close To Me” ist the third album of the Portuguese Jazz singer Maria Mendes featuring the American Grammy pianist John Beasley and the famous Grammy Metropole Orkest. The musical outcome on the new album expresses the modern creative twist on the most famous Portuguese music style: Fado. The lyrical characteristics of Fado are dramatic love stories and ‘saudade’ – Saudade is the Portuguese name for deep feelings of nostalgia and a profound desire for a loved one who is forever gone. These themes remain intact with the new compositions and jazz orchestrations, where Mendes expresses her vision on how Fado stands up in times of modern love.
With enthusiastic reviews from international critics who consider her to be one of the most promising voices of the European Jazz scene, Maria Mendes saw her talent recognized by renowned musicians, among them Quincy Jones, who made the following statement at the Montreux Jazz Festival: I see a promising shining future for this young talented singer.
The Rotterdam based half Portuguese, half Brazilian jazz vocalist, has won several international jazz awards and performed in New York at the world famous Blue Note Jazz Club NY, marking the debut of a Portuguese artist at this legendary jazz club.
With two albums under her own name – debut album “Along the Road” (2012, Dot Time Records NYC) and “Innocentia” (2015, Sony Music Portugal) – Maria had a sold out international tour of 44 concerts in Switzerland (Montreux Jazz Festival), Portugal (Casa da Música and CCB), Netherlands (North Sea Jazz Festival and Concertgebouw Amsterdam), Belgium (Handelsberus), France (Sunside Jazz Club Paris), Brazil (SESC Pompéia), to name a few.
Recently, one of her songs, “Inverso”, was part of the soundtrack of the Portuguese soap opera “Ouro Verde” (winner of the international Emmy).
“I see a promising shining future for this young talented singer” — QUINCY JONES
“Beautiful singing and great scat” — HERMETO PASCOAL
“Mendes immediately profiles herself as a strong jazz singer. Intimacy and beauty from the first track” — JAZZISM (NL)
“No focus on trends. Sophisticated voice and high-class band” — OHRENSCHMAUCH (DE)
“Mendes makes clear she has absolutely nothing to prove” — John Kelman, ALL ABOUT JAZZ (USA)
Maria Mendes (vocals, musical compositions and arrangements)
John Beasley (producer, orchestrations, Hammond, Metropole Orkest’s conductor)
Karel Boehlee (piano)
Jasper Somsen (acoustic bass)
Jasper van Hulten (drums, percussion)Metropole Orkest (Chamber line up)
Vincent Houdijk (vibraphone)ISKOGRAPHIE:
2019 “Close To Me” feat. John Beasley and The Metropole Orkest
2016 “Innocentia” feat. Anat Cohen
2012 Debut CD “Along The Road”