We’ve had our eye on French / Brazilian pianist Philippe Baden Powell for some time.
Philippe is the son of Brazilian musical legend Baden Powell de Aquino, and is reinventing Brazilian jazz in the lineage of his father’s generation. Balancing the classical with the spiritual, the cinematic with the introspective, and sensitivity with a distinctly Brazilian groove, Notes Over Poetry calls upon the inspiration of the many musical and artistic greats Baden Powell has been surrounded by throughout his life.
“The great Brazilian poet and old family friend, Vinicius de Moraes used to say that ‘life is the art of encounter’, and that is what this album is about.” A nomadic upbringing – moving between Rio, Paris and the coincidentally named German city of Baden-Baden, as well as touring internationally alongside his father and brother, provided boundless encounters with inspirational figures. Touring also gave Philippe Baden Powell his first taste of life in the spotlight: recorded when he was just thirteen, a sold out show alongside his father and brother at Sala Cecília Meireles in Rio De Janeiro, would become the 1996 album Baden Powell & Filhos.
To his father, Philippe attributes key characteristics which have enriched and guided him in his professional life: “He transmitted to me the passion and commitment indispensable to any artist.” With his father he also shares an innate pull towards collaboration as key to the creative process. “I can’t remember a time making music just by myself, I’ve always felt like a kid with toys waiting for friends to come and play.” Credit is indeed due to the musicians on the album, many of whom are legendary artists in their own right: French jazz drummer André Ceccarelli, who has worked with everyone from Aretha Franklin to Michel Legrande; prolific Belgian jazz vocalist David Linx; and Afro-Brazilian percussion master Ruca Rebordão.