While Americans celebrate Independence Day, my 4th of July commemorates the first Review of my first CD "Mulheres" by Alison Bentley for the LondonJazz News on July 04, 2012.
Other reviews had been published in 2010 when the CD came out in Italy on the Fo(u)r Records website, in Croatia on Vjesnik and in Albania on Tirana Times, but Ms Bentley's review two years later for a UK's multi-award winning jazz publication, made it all worth it! Fireworks were all over me as if it was my Independence Day!
Why was it so important? Why do I still think about it 5 years later?
Because it was published in the UK where I have never performed to this day.
Because it took into account the first recording of an unknown singer.
Because it was a critique without judgement from someone who really listened to the album and showed thorough knowledge and sensibility both of Brazilian music and of the musicianship of all those working with me on the project.
Because it put into words exactly what I had intended when conceiving this CD: singing some of the "forgotten pearls" of Brazilian music giving them a "fresh, jazzy twist, sung with real summery charm".
Because I learned from this review! It was an enlightened assessment of my work that brought up issues which I had not done consciously, but by mere instinct. And learning about yourself through the eyes of others makes every day a 4th of July!
Throughout the last 5 years, I released 2 other CDs and the LondonJazz News, as well as other publications, went on taking an interest in my work and publishing reviews that always lead me to realizing that a big part of the music I do, comes from instinct and heart, rather than from systematic knowledge and planing. This awareness helps me stay grounded and humble, always conscious that as good as I think that what I do may be, I keep learning and evolving every day through the eyes of others, the ears of others, the constructive criticism of others.
The 4th of July will always be here to remind me to remain appreciative of a good review but humble not to let praise go to my head, creative but attentive, receptive but independent.
You can check other reviews of "Mulheres", "Menescantando" and "3 Mundus" here. Just click on the titles of the albums!