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whatmusic.com presents ‘Obras 2 - O Pulo do Gato’, the second album of heavyweight drummer Edison Machado’s extraordinary group. Recorded in 1971, a year after the much sought-after original ‘Obras’, this album has never been released before!
  • Think post-Coltrane Samba Jazz!
  • Tracks include ‘Mr Maciel’, ‘Endyra’ & ‘Asa Branca’!
  • Features guest star Edson Maciel
  • Brand new liner notes by Haroldo Mauro Jr., Ricardo Pereira dos Santos and Ion Muniz

Check the 30 second clips from the album...

The whatmusic.com interview...

O Pulo do Gato

Edison would always say "when I play music it is like a cat jumping, whatever happens I always land on four feet!" That is why this second "Obras" album is really called "O Pulo do Gato" meaning "the cat’s jump". As you listen to this album, you can imagine Edison calling out "O pulo do Gato!" without even a pause in his drumming!

The Samba Groove
The drum music of Edison Machado is a beautiful relation of exclusiveness and inclusiveness. In his playing he expresses the specific, characteristic groove of samba, true to its roots, which excludes all other music genres; and at the same time one hears the world in it, through combinations of rhythms that relate the samba to all other rhythmic manifestations in the planet. His music is also personal and impersonal, for although his playing is distinct from everybody else, it has a universal quality that touches anyone, anywhere and at anytime now, past and future. Such are attributes found in great artists. Edison Machado is, in my opinion, one of the greatest drummers who ever lived. He is certainly the drummer who has most influenced Brasilian music and drumming.

I felt honored when Edison asked me to join his group in the late 1960s, when I was under twenty years old. I worked with his quartet for a while, together with Ion Muniz and Ricardo Santos, two fine musicians with whom I had been playing regularly and frequently for the few preceding years. As we worked together, I felt Edison's playing was so inspiring that it made me want to quit piano and play drums. And so I did. I left the group and started practicing the drums. In a few months I was already working as a drummer. It was around this time that Obras 1 was recorded, with Alfredo Cardim doing a wonderful job as pianist. Later on I joined the group again, and recorded the present album, which Edison himself wanted to name "O Pulo do Gato", the tune I so named because of his constantly mentioning of the musical meaning of a "cat's jump". Needless to say, to record with Edison was a big challenge to me. Besides Edison himself, trombonist Edson Maciel was also a great artist and his playing was one of the cornerstones of my melodic conception. Both were admired and respected by the three younger musicians on the band: Ricardo, Ion and myself. But there was also another big responsibility: to live up to the high standard Alfredo Cardim had previously set by his impeccable performance on the original Obras album. I was fortunate, though, since Edison had the ability to make every musician in his band to play from the heart and to put forth musically the best of themselves. Thus, when we started recording, all I could think was to make good music and have a great time playing with such a wonderful band.

I am grateful to Charlie Leach and Whatmusic for the efforts done as to the fostering of instrumental Brasilian music, of which this album, recorded over three decades ago, is a very important instance. Thanks to Whatmusic it is being released now for the first time ever.

Haroldo Mauro Jr.

Edison Machado, inventor of Samba Novo
Although the music we played is commonly called Latin Jazz or Samba Jazz, these modern terms completely miss the truth. For those of us who played on this record, this music was more Samba than the music of our Samba forefathers, who were not sure if "Pelo telefone" was a Samba or a Maxixe. Edison Machado was the guy that put modern Samba on the map. In the history of Brazilian drumming there were three key figures: ‘Faísca’ who created double bass drums beat which in Brazil we call bumbo-dudlo, then Hildofredo, who created the Samba Cruzado, and then Edison Machado, the creator of the Samba no Prato (samba on cymbals). Under Edison’s leadership, we were conscious that the music we were playing was more than Samba

Samba had already developed in the 20’s and with composers like Donga, Pixinguinha and Ismael Silva, and in the 30’s with Garoto, the musical director for Carmen Miranda and a virtuouso guitar player playing bossa nova even then! But it was only really established as a hit in Brazil and throughout the whole world thanks to Edison’s fantastic intuition in response to an accident. He was at a gig in 1949 (aged 17 or 18), in a Gafieira (a Samba house where there is a traditional samba band, probably "Dancing Brasil"), when in the middle of the tune, the snare skin broke and Edison instinctively started to play his cymbals to ride over the rhythm, while his left hand continued with its customary accent and syncopation over the tom tom. The other musicians are shouting excitedly "yeah man sounds good", then suddenly the salon was full of people dancing. At that moment he created the Samba Novo. This was a turning point, not only in his life, but also in the history of samba music. From then on everyone wanted to play the samba in Brazil and everyone wanted to play the drums like Edison Machado, including me and including Haroldo Mauro Jr. and everyone else. Even today the DJs are sampling Edison’s records from Brazil in the 60’s to give the beat to their music.

It’s only after Edison Machado, that we were able to play Samba music on piano, bass and drums, or guitar, bass and drums. This was a major turning point. From then on everything started to change, the Samba could be played in small groups and it opened the way for the music of Jobim, Donato, Joao Gilberto and others. He opened the space for modern music. After Edison’s drumbeat, everyone could be themselves.

Ricardo Dos Santos

My jazz inspiration
Around 1968 pianists Haroldo Mauro Jr. and Alfredo Cardim, bass player Ricardo Santos and I formed a kind off a "modern jazz gang". We spent the whole day practicing our instruments, listening ad infinitum to all the records by John Coltrane, Miles Davis and others we could lay our hands on - and jamming wherever we could. We all lived with our parents (no bills, no rent) and we were free to eat, drink, breath and sleep modern jazz. The only thing we needed was having a REAL musician around to coach us in the same way ‘Trane and Miles did with their sidemen. Edison, on the other side, needed a group of young, radical and dedicated musicians to carry on his dreams of having a mean Samba Jazz combo. When we discovered one another it was, like people say in Brazil "joining appetite with hunger". This chemistry was pure dynamite. We formed the "Edison Machado Quartet" and this band became a legend. All I can say is that without Edison I would have never become a jazz saxophonist.

The Edison Machado Quartet was originally formed with pianist Haroldo Mauro Jr. He was replaced by Alfredo Cardim which was later replaced by Haroldo. The two pianists have similar styles of playing, and alternated as the Quartet's pianists.

Ion Muniz

The Edison Machado Quartet with special guest Edson Maciel
Ion Muniz - tenor sax
Edson Maciel - trombone
Haroldo Mauro Jr. - piano
Ricardo Pereira dos Santos - bass
Edison Machado - drums

Recorded at Audio Studio ‘B’, Rio de Janeiro 1971. Production by Bill Horne/Peter Keller. Engineered by Toninho Silva. Artwork by Kirk McCarthy and Alex Roberts based on work by Peter Keller & Max Schmoll. Remastered from the original tapes by Ricardo Garcia at Magic Master Rio de Janeiro, Feb 2002

Special thanks to Bill Horne, Ellen Machado, Edison Jr. (Eddie Axe), Ricardo dos Santos, Haroldo Mauro Jr., Edmundo Maciel & Durval Ferreira

© 2004 whatmusic.com
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