The cast of Pipedream's production of NINE. Photo: Kristian Guilfoyle



Date and Venue 3 June @ 8pm | Fortune Sound Club, Vancouver

Reviewer Ed Farolan

What a charismatic young lady! It was an exciting launch, especially for friends and family who cheered her on as she sang with her Aché group of dancers and instrumentalists to launch her first CD she appropriately calls ACHÉ.

In the CD's jacket, she explains that "Aché" comes from the Yoruba language adopted in Brazil meaning "everyhing positive in the universe". She also thanks God, her parents and family for their support. I had a chance to meet some members of her family-- her siser Marina and her cousin Ana Paola who talked about how NessaV (a nickname for her real name, Vanessa) and how she grew up in a family of musicians. Her dad is a Capoeira Master, a musician and the Artistic Director of Aché Brasil, a well-know band that is featured in festivals around the world. We've reviewed this band's concerts in the past when they performed for MusicFest.

Her CD contains nine songs, and during the launch, she started off with "Show Me Whatcha Got", the best song, I thought, in the album because it had a Brazilian touch to it. This song was featured in the Entertainment section of The Province. She co-produced the CD with Randy Emata.

NessaV is Canadian-born and was raised here in Vancouver. She was trained in a variety of dance styles, including Capoeira, Samba, African and hip-hop. Capoeira is some form of Martial Arts but is more than that--it is dance, culture, music for the Brazilians. During the launch, members of the group gave a demonstration of this art.

In NessaV's music, we see all these influences, particularly in the songs in her new CD. She has her unique sound, although we could see a lot of influence from singers she grew up knowing: JLo, Norah Jones, Beyonce,Mariah Carey, etc. Fusion seems to be the style of today in music, and this eclecticism is reflected in her songs.

I had a brief chat with NessaV before she went on stage, and she was telling me how busy she has been with concerts. She just came back from a concert tour in Beijing, and when I asked her when her next concert was, she said she didn't know. There was just a lot going on and she didn't know what was coming up next.

Another star is born in our midst here in Vancouver, and I could see the strong influence of new Brazilian music in today's musical landscape. Just as we had Bossa Nova with Joao Gilberto and Antonio Carlos Jobim half a century ago, today the Brazilian presence continues with new sounds and innovations.

There is a lot of promise with this young lady, and I am sure that she will eventually make her mark as an important international singing star in the near future.

© 2010 Ed Farolan