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Ensemble Novo Who Saw You Then, Who Sees You Now

Who Saw You Then, Who Sees You Now
Ensemble Novo
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June 23, 2017 – This week, Philadelphia-based samba-jazz quintet Ensemble Novo releases “Who Saw You Then, Who Sees You Now.” The seven-song mini album comes just seven months after the release of “Look To the Sky,” and features little-heard gems from the late 1960s and early ‘70s, the period after Brazilian bossa nova took the world by storm. Among them: Edu Lobo’s “Casa Forte,” Chico Buarque’s “Quem Te Viu, Quem Te Ve (Who Saw You Then, Who Sees You Now),” and “Reza.”

Over the last year, Ensemble Novo has been attracting music lovers to its chilled-out, spacious sound. The Key, WXPN-FM’s music blog, described the atmosphere created by Ensemble Novo as “an inviting space of easygoing comfort, balmy and completely entrancing with rustling percussion and vibrantly subdued melodies.”

And in a recent review of Look to the Sky and Who Saw You Then, The Vinyl District raved “Together these two mini-albums put a playful spin on some of the world’s most welcoming music, Brazilian pop from the 1960s and 1970s. They are executed with a jazz touch and musical virtuosity by musicians who may not be household names, but deserve to be.”

Who Saw You Then, Who Sees You Now was recorded over several days in 2016 at Rittenhouse Soundworks. A video shot during those sessions is available here: https://youtu.be/_3hv1rycCZM. It offers glimpses of Ensemble Novo in the studio recording, as well as in performance during a Musician’s Gathering evening at Rittenhouse Soundworks. Other resources are available at www.ensemblenovo.com.

Ensemble Novo is the brainchild of writer and musician Tom Moon, who plays tenor saxophone and flute and is the composer of the brooding “Columbia Waltz” on Look to the Sky and “The Sand This Time” on Who Saw You Then. Following the publication of his New York Times bestseller 1000 Recordings To Hear Before You Die, Moon resumed active work as a musician and devoted specific attention to Brazilian music. He convinced several prominent members of Philadelphia’s diverse music community – vibraphonist Behn Gillece, guitarist Ryan McNeely, percussionist Jim Hamilton, bassist Mark Przybylowski – to join in an exploration of samba, bossa nova and MPB. Through a monthly residency at Philadelphia’s popular whiskey bar, Time, that’s been going for over three years, the group has developed a loyal following of listeners and dancers, and has performed at Longwood Gardens, Spruce Street Harbor Park, the Barnes Foundation, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, World Cafe Live, Heritage and many other venues.

1. Quen Te Viu, Tuem Te Ve
2. Upa Neguinho
3. The Sand This Time
4. Casa Forte
5. Estate
6. E Luxo So
7. Reza

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