By Stephanie Pettway
Sacred Heart University’s Academic Music Program presented their fourth annual Jobimfest on Wednesday, April 19 in the Edgerton Center for the Performing Arts.
The festival celebrates the music of Brazilian songwriter, composer, arranger, singer, pianist and guitarist, Antonio Carlos Jobim. Director of Academic Music Programs and Professor Joseph Carter performed alongside the Brazilian Jazz All-Stars as they paid tribute to Jobim.
“I love Jobim’s music. It all started when I researched more of his music based on two songs,” said Carter. “I came to realize there was so much within this one composer that I felt he would be a good person to expose others to.”
Jobimfest began with the performance of the first song, “Piano na Mangueira” (Piano in Mangueira). After finishing the song, Carter introduced the band.
Carter played the guitar, Tim Moran played the saxophone, Hendrik Meurkens played the harmonica and vibes, David Fink played the bass and Adriano Santos was on the drums and percussion set.
“When preparing for this concert, I knew that these musicians would work well together. They would understand the music, though we wouldn’t be able to rehearse together due to logistics,” said Carter. “However, I knew they would be able to quickly assess the material during sound check and be able to perform it on a high level.”
As the show continued, Carter mentioned that the lyrics for the songs “O Morro Nao Tem Vez” (The Hill Has No Chance) and “O Amor Em Paz” (Love in Peace) could be found in the program. He said that Jobim wrote lyrics that were multifaceted and similar to poetry.
Jobim composed around 600 songs in his lifetime, so Carter had many options when he had to decide which songs to perform.
“There are so many to choose from that sometimes it’s not which to choose but which not to choose. His compositions are so varied, as far as genre, that I try to pick different types in variety,” said Carter.
Many of the students in the audience were from Carter’s Latin American music classes, so they were familiar with Jobim’s work since they learned about him during the Brazilian period.
Some students were pleased to see their professor perform, especially the specific songs that were discussed in class. They could see the passion that he had from class transfer to the stage.
“I liked seeing Professor Carter play. I have him for my Latin American music class, where he played some of the songs to the class,” said freshman Erin Perotta. “The class is interesting because it is something that you don’t normally learn, so it’s completely new for me. He’s also very passionate about what he teaches and it makes it easy to focus and listen in class.”
Even some students who aren’t Carter’s students were pleased with the festival.
“I enjoyed the performance considering it isn’t something I would have gone to on my own. I came with a friend who came for the class, but I ended up liking it,” said
sophomore Deanna Scalzo.
Jobim was the primary source force behind the creation of the Bossa Nova style, a genre of Brazilian music. He left many songs that are currently included in jazz and pop standard collections and many of his works are played by Brazilian and international artists today.
“He is, in my opinion, the most important and influential Brazilian composer of the 20th century,” said Carter. “He’s the person that contributed the most to the development of Brazilian music in all its forms.”