Showing posts from June, 2006

Sara Tavares - SOB's, New York City, 6/27/06

Sara Tavares played New York at SOB's (Sound of Brazil) as part of a rare stateside mini tour to promote her new album, BalancĂȘ , her third album overall but her first to receive a U.S. release. Tavares is from Portugal and I might never have had the pleasure had not a good friend run across her singing at a club in Lisbon, Portugal some years ago while on vacation there. Music lovers find their way to music all different ways; the person sitting next to me at SOB's became aware of Tavares by seeing her on a program of world music videos on Link TV which is carried on DirecTV (channel 375) and Dish Network (channel 9410). Tavares' music is hard to label exactly, with a background that includes gospel, funk, and soul as her website describes it, mixing African rhythms into contemporary pop songs. Tavares on her latest album has written all the songs, played many of the instruments and has come up with a beautifully written and great sounding record. In America music like

Lelia Broussard - Steel City Coffeehouse, Phoenixville, PA, 6/24/06

Lelia Broussard brought her acoustic show to the Steel City Coffeehouse in Phoenixville, performing on acoustic guitar with some tasty accompaniment by Jef Lee Johnson on electric guitar. As great as her music is when fully produced (see Lil-Yah review ), it sounds equally amazing performed in these simpler arrangements, which is ultimately a testament to the quality of the songwriting, and to her remarkable talent as a performer. Jef is perhaps the only guitarist that I have seen in recent memory who plays using no pedals or electronics; Jef brings his guitar and the amp you see him sitting on, and he just plugs in and plays. And boy does he ever play. He takes songs that are already great to start with and makes them even better with his fine guitar work. She opened with "I'll Be", "Happy People" and "All I Do", all from the Lil-Yah album. Then she played a new song, "I Like You in Mine" which debuted recently in demo form on her MySpace

Lelia Broussard - Lil-Yah (, 2005)

Lil-Yah , the first full length CD by Louisiana native and current Philadelphia resident, Lelia Broussard , is such an amazingly excellent debut that I am constantly thankful to have found this extraordinarily talented singer-songwriter at the outset of her career. We find new artists and new music all kinds of crazy ways, and in this case it was the happenstance of a post on the WXPN message board during last fall's 885 countdown by Mary Broussard, Lelia's mom and manager or "momager" as Lelia sometimes refers to her, that led me to Lelia's website. I've got some great things to say about this record, so to illustrate I would suggest opening another browser on your computer and go to Lelia's MySpace page and listen to the three or four songs posted there or go to her website for samples of all the songs while you read the following. Self-released last November, Lil-Yah is eleven tracks of pure soul/pop perfection. These tunes run a gamut of styles and