Candid, 1996

1. Samba Novo 

2. Brazilian Dorian Dream

3. Madison Square 

4. Tristeza De Nos Dois

5. One For Manfredo (Meurkens)

6. A Ilha (Meurkens)

7. Dig This Samba!

8. Caminhos Cruzados 

9. Frajola 

10. Madalena

11. Seu Acalento (Meurkens)

Hendrik Meurkens – harmonica, vibes, marimba

Manfredo Fest – piano

Phil Fest – guitar

Torben Westergaard – bass

Portinho – drums, percussion 

Hendrik’s Notes

Manfredo and I had a great musical partnership that lasted several years. Both of us were recording for Concord Records, at the time, and that is how we met. Manfredo invited me to play on two of his Concord CDs: AMAZONAS and COMEÇAR DE NOVO. He also recorded my composition Madison Square on AMAZONAS.

This album was recorded during a European tour we did July of 1996. We had another tour (including a CD recording) planned in October 1999. Sadly, Manfredo got ill shortly before the beginning of the tour and passed away while we were on the road with Helio Alves taking his place.

I miss Manfredo greatly. He was one of the finest human beings one would ever meet. He had a great sense of humor. And he had a killing sense of swing. Together with Portinho on drums they were an absolutely dangerous rhythm section. Both are from the South of Brazil.

There is another great piano player from the South of Brazil who lives in the New York area by the name of Cidinho. And he has a sister by the name of Vera Mara who sings and plays percussion. All of them have an unbelievable swing. There must be something in the water down there!

Manfredo was blind and because he was not able to write music in order to prepare the recording sessions, he would mail me cassettes where he spoke and played through the arrangements on the piano. These tapes were just great. Each of them a lesson in how to swing Samba Jazz on the piano. I still have the last tape that he sent me for the never recorded album. I am not yet ready to listen to it.

Check out Frajola, Manfredo’s amazing piano showcase. The swing is incredible on this track.

This recording was done in a big studio in one of Germany’s grand old radio stations. The orchestra room had all the symphony instruments stored and I discovered a great marimba. I played the instrument and liked it so much I decided to make my recording my debut here on marimba. Of course I don’t travel with a marimba. Why would anybody whose main instrument is the harmonica (at 458 grams) schlep around a set of vibes plus a marimba???

Also on the date, the great bassist Torben Westergaard. He is from Denmark and one more proof for the theory that you don’t necessarily have to be from Brazil to play topnotch Samba Jazz.

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or an Autographed Copy