Anna Beatriz – Beautiful Ride

I first met Anna Beatriz in Loewes Hotel, Hollywood, in February of 2013. My first impression: bold, with a voice full of depth, fun, and a passion for her music which showed both in her performance and in her enthusiastic conversation. Originally from Santos, Brazil, Anna comes with a wealth of experience in the business, recording her first album, “Sobre Nós”, in 2006.  She completed her Associate of Arts degree at the Hollywood Musician’s Institute in 2013. With this brand new EP, she brings us an exciting and novel mix of jazz-infused big band pop. Come with me on this Beautiful Ride.

Anna Beatriz - Beautiful Ride

This has been an interesting album to review for me; it is unique, in the sense that I am exposed to very little music like it. It’s reminiscent of my very first impression of Anna Beatriz, bringing something of a classy big band feel to modern pop music. With songwriting shades of Basia, she hints at Michael Bublé with the brass section, and drives the EP onward with a vocal which is a little reminiscent of Maria Vanedi out of Colombia. Accompanied by some world-class musicians, she’s produced a little gem in “Beautiful Ride”.

“Let them Say” is a strong start to the EP; beginning with a brass section which had me swinging to the beat immediately, eyes closed, I was imagining alley cats dancing in the moonlight after hours.  It’s co-delivered in Brazilian-Portuguese and English language, inclusive and multi-cultural, giving the immediate feeling that everyone can join her:

Her vocal is immediately captivating, sultry, gravelly, and draws you into the song. With a simple melody, building the theme through the first verse, the chorus wells up and brings out such happy abandoned feelings. My favorite part is the refrain, the jazzy guitar accompanying Anna Beatriz’ lovely vocal;

“Let them say, I don’t care
Let them talk, doesn’t matter to me,
Let them think, whatever they may,
Let them go on forever, let them talk, I run my own show”

…and she does. As the song builds from this point on, it’s brought to a peak with a fabulous clarinet solo. Rounding out the work with this glorious big band epic finale, the point of the song, the wild abandon, is well summed up in this last lyrical spit-in-the-eye at convention;

“Who cares if I go out to play or dance in the rain,
Or do nothing at all;
I may win, lose ,or draw, but I’m still in the game,
I’ll do my part”

Moving on to “Falling Love”, she slows the ride down somewhat; something of an interlude number in it’s slow jazziness, it feels all Ronnie Scott’s club in Soho, London, with a cigar and a single malt, and being carried on the current of a smooth-jazz sea. There’s a notable pick-up of pace in the middle – I do like this about Anna Beatriz’ writing. It fits the style well, blending the run-on jazz feel of the song with an epic poetic celebration of her glorious lover:

“The world can stop,
The sun can shine forever;
All I want is you might and day,
Because life is more bright
When I’m with you,
I won’t ever touch the ground again”

From this moment on, “Falling Love” leaves you falling into an ironic high. It’s a good place to be. It’s even taken me away from the drabness outside with this minus 2 degree Fahrenheit weather we’re having.

At this point I’d like to mention; this is not a style of music I’m used to listening to, but by this time in the EP, I’m really digging it. The entire work is written in a way that eases you in, and gives you the time to immerse yourself in the different elements which make up Anna Beatriz and her band.

Ana Beatriz 5

“Another World” showcases Anna’s voice well. Planned gaps in the instrumentals give her the chance to show every edge of that glassy vocal. Sweet like honey, this is another song full of feeling, heat, beat, and sweeping celebratory highs and lows. Above all, a great finish, abrupt and unexpected, and appropriate to the lyric:

“Wake me up when this whole messy world;
Is done”

“Leave Me Alone” is the heartbreaker in this musical journey. This one has more than a little soft rock in the delivery.  I love songs like it; a heartfelt, desperate, clever lyric which is emotionally communicated to an eager audience. Anna Beatriz gives it her all. I can only imagine what sparked this one.

The brassy hopeful intro belies a very different song to come.

“If you could walk in my shoes,
You would feel my heart is breaking,
I’m giving and you’re taking all my time;
I can’t take the waiting, because the climb is too high,
I’m slipping down and falling to the ground”

It’s a painful reprise to “Falling Love” – a very different message, with an aching overtone to the chorus, powerful yet agonizing at the same time. The guitar solo is superbly executed and well-placed, a long-lost love of mine. It’s a song to mull over a sad glass of wine, with more than a few tears diluting it.

“If you don’t know what you want from me,
Let me go”.

Anna Beatriz rounds off the EP with such a sparky upbeat number, it is almost shocking after the melancholy of “Leave Me Alone”. “Beautiful Ride” is the whole point; it’s tying up the rough stuff with the beauty of the ongoing journey of life. Finger-clicking, infused with a wonderful trumpet solo; backed with jazz guitar that is brilliantly understated, then comes to the fore in the delightful finger-picking of Takeshi.

“Oh, it’s a beautiful ride,
in the circle of life where I’m going,
there’s nowhere to hide,
Naked thoughts I am ready to share,
It takes time, I don’t mind
As long as I get there”

Oh, she got there. This EP ends on a fabulous discordant jazzy note, well-defining the genre for which it’s intended. She’s taken us on a ride, brassy, bold, emotional, well-delivered, professionally executed, with a lovely demonstration of her powerful vocal. She’s clearly had fun in the effort of putting this EP together.

Join me in congratulating Anna Beatriz; you can buy this latest effort here, and you can view her Fish Pond profile here. I expect much more to come from Anna, and look forward to seeing her in Los Angeles again very soon.

David Mark Smith
CEO and Founder, Global Musicians Fish Pond
Singer/Songwriter, My Lucky Fish


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