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).
This album is the second of the studio recordings by Sergio Mendes & Brasil '66 with A & M Records label, and is certainly one of the top of his production. Composers like Jorge Ben, Michel Legrand, Joao Gilberto, Cole Porter and Antonio Carlos Jobim bring creations that are splendidly arranged by Sergio Mendes, who can find fused arrangements between pop and jazz, wrapped by the great Brazilian rhythms, bossa nova and samba. Mendes offers a very personal sound, in which rhythm, melody and rich harmonies create a soft sophisticated atmosphere with its warm emotions.