An amazing collection – every single Jorge Ben album recorded for Philips – one hell of a massive legacy in music, packaged here with a bonus CD of rare material too! The albums in the collection are the stuff of legend – amazing discs that forever changed the face of Brazilian music with Jorge's unique blend of samba and soul, plus a touch of funk as the 70s came on – and together, the music is a mindblowingly heavy batch of work that few other artists could ever match! Titles include Samba Esquema Novo, Sacudin Ben Samba, Ben E Samba Bon, Big Ben, Jorge Ben (1969), Forca Bruta, Negro E Lindo, Ben, 10 Anos Depois, A Tabua De Esmeralda, Solta O Pavao, Gil E Jorge, and Africa Brasil. Rarities disc is unique to this set, from what we can tell – and is filled with goodies too!
First released in 1967, O Bidú is Jorge Ben's fifth full-length album. It is in many ways a typical album for Ben in the '60s, full of sweet, sincere, and mainly upbeat songs, with the music mixing samba with elements of bossa nova, swing, pop, and soul. Compared to many other works by Ben, the string and horn sections are used very sparsely. The tone of the album is set right from the start with the catchy opening track "Amor de Carnaval," one of the best songs Ben has ever written. "Frases," with its soft groove and neat lyrics, and "Toda Colorida" are two other highlights on this highly enjoyable album, whose only real flaw is its brief playing time (only just over 31 minutes).
“Compiled by former Talking Head David Byrne and released in 1989, with liner notes and translations by Arto Lindsay, Beleza Tropical documents a New York hipster's first infatuation with the rich, deep, and varied spectrum of Brazilian popular music from the rebellious '70s. There are better Brazilian anthologies, but none so clearly assembled in order to counter the received opinion of Brazilian music as lightweight bachelor-pad fluff (although Milton Nascimento, with his beautiful high tenor, sometimes comes close). Caetano Veloso (whose magnificent “Terra” is itself worth the price of admission) and Gilberto Gil are remarkable lyricists whose music is influenced as much by the Afro-Brazilian rhythms of northern Brazil as by the Beatles. Jorge Ben contributes a pair of highfalutin yet funky soccer songs, Chico Buarque is at his most uncompromisingly poetic, and Nazare Pereira taps deep into Brazilian folklore”.Richard Gehr (Editorial Review, Amazon.com)