Friday, May 25, 2007

Garden of Tonal Delights

Sampling the temperate vocals of Astrud Gilberto from her song entitled Berimbau, Lucas MacFadden a.k.a Cut Chemist created a sexy, infectuous track included on his 2006 release The Audience's Listening.

Cut Chemist – The Garden [mp3]

MacFadden is a former member of the funk Latin band Ozomatli and most notoriously known for his stylings within the underground hip-hop group Jurassic 5.

Gilberto, as most know, is the accidental vocalist made famous by the bossa nova sprawl of the 1960s.

But what the heck is a berimbau? The sampling you hear at the beginning of the Cut Chemist track loops the instrument’s unique sound. A berimbau is a single steel string fastened to a wooden bow that is attached to a gourd. It is played by balancing the body with the left hand whilst holding a coin or stone, with thumb and first finger, against the wire and then striking it with a bamboo stick. The gourd acts as a resonator and the left hand holding the coin or stone helps to control the tone. There are three desired sounds of the berimbau: the high tone, the rattle or buzz tone, and the low tone.
Further reading:

Berimbau on Wikipedia:

Cut Chemist’s official homepage:

Astrud Gilberto’s official homepage:

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