Henri Salvador and Brazil is a love story that lasted a lifetime, a story made of romances, more discreet good times, others lived with less restraint.
From a country of languor, Guyana, he arrived in Paris in 1933, feeds on Jazz by listening and frequenting the greatest. Once France was occupied, he flew to South America after having joined the orchestra of “Ray Ventura and his schoolboys”.
He made in Rio his first steps across the Atlantic.
In contact with musicians from the city, some of whom became legends like Ary Barroso, Dorival Caymmi and others, Henri nourished himself for a life of notes and cuddly chords.
Returning to France after the war, Henri began an amazing career strongly influenced by flavors of Copacabana.
What he remains ignoring for a long time, is that many years later, two of his musics (“Dans mon île” and “Rose”) appearing in an Italian film “Europa di noite” by AllessandroBlasetti, deeply impressed the generation which created Bossa Nova. Antonio carlos Jobim, the immense Brazilian composer, saw the film and was seduced by Henri’s melodies, chords and voice.
Roberto Menescal, one of the other creators of this musical esthetic declared to Henri: “Without you, Bossa Nova would have existed anyway, but without you, it would not have been the same at all”.
As proof of this invincible link between Henri Salvador and Brazil, Gilberto Gil, then Minister of Culture, decorated Henri with the Order of Cultural Merit (the highest decoration in Brazil for an artist), for his contribution to Brazilian music, the same year as João Gilberto.
His latest album “Reverence” was recorded in Rio de Janeiro under the “baton” of Maestro Jaques Morelenbaum, one of Tom Jobim’s last arrangers, with the participation of Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil and João Donato.
Many years after the death of both famous artists, and at a time when tributes are being prepared in Brazil, Paula Morelenbaum and Didier Sustrac will celebrate Henri Salvador and Antonio Carlos Jobim, in a program where the most beautiful pieces of their repertoires, those in which they crossed paths during their lives without ever having been able to meet each other. Because it was a characteristic of their two respective lives, that of devoting a deep mutual respect, that of impregnating each other with their music, without ever having the chance to meet each other face to face.
Choosing today Paula and Didier, and finally bringing them together on stage, is to marry the flavors carried by one of the most representative female voices and personalities of Brazilian music, and the perfumes of a musician-poet a little adventurous, which will swing with sweetness (*) the words historically carried by the voices of a great singer dressed in white, named Salvador, and the Maestro Antonio Carlos Jobim.
With this concert event, they will perform together a vibrant tribute, never done before, to two exceptional artists, who best symbolize the bridge between two great cultures.
The duo of musicians to play with Paula and Didier will be theItalian-Belgian guitarist Roberto Di Fernandino, and the Brazilian percussionist Osman Martins. With the exceptional participations, according to the visited cities, of Emmanuel Donzella and Dominique Cravic, authors composersinterpreters, and partners of Henri Salvador.
Emmanuel de Ryckel