In a cozy homecoming concert, local favorite Tim Snider previewed his new album, “In Brazil,” for Portland fans last week.
Upon his return from a recent tour, everyone welcomed the multi-talented musician to Vie de Boheme, a friendly wine bar nestled in the corner of S.E. 7th and Clay. Snider introduced his Brazilian band mate, Caio Andreatto, whom he met while spending this past winter in Brazil. A serendipitous meeting led to an instantaneous bond which resulted in the creation and recording of “In Brazil,” a road trip-evoking bossa nova sound, windows rolled down, volume cranked up.
The ten tracks make up a truly international album. Some feature Caio, his father, uncle, and other Brazilian musicians, while others feature local Portlanders. Parts were recorded there, some here, with the mixing and mastering done in Portland by Joe Hall at Camp Creek Records and Dana White at Specialized Mastering.
Tim and Caio’s band for this performance featured several accomplished local musicians, all of whom have their own projects: Chris Lay on drums; the dynamic Saeeda Wright, vocals; and joining them later, brothers Tim Ribner, piano, and Max Ribner on flugelhorn. While Tim performed a few old favorites, most of the songs were new.
The music began with Tim and his violin on a favorite, “Hurricane,” perfect for the electric violin – and really felt like a hurricane when he played it. From there, we were transported to Brazil on “With You,” featuring the rest of the band. “With you my spirit comes alive, there’s nothing I won’t try or do, as long as I’m with you.”
Saeeda’s vocals fit “Stand for Love,” her song well-timed for battles being waged around the world: “’Cause it’s all in our hands, don’t you understand, there’s so much good worth fighting for, I will stand for love and not for war.” “The Stairwell” claims the middle spot in the album. It is a short, yet glorious song, recorded late one “magical” night in an actual stairwell. Tim said they had a better name for it but weren’t able to recall it, hence, “The Stairwell.”
I wished I had heard it in that stairwell.
Next up was the romantic song written for his girl, “Vivian.” “My sweet Vivian, how do I begin to tell you I love you so…..” Saeeda and Tim sang to “Ever After,” a song about facing the silence and distance that often comes to a relationship at some point (while hoping to ride out the storm). “Yes, we will make mistakes, some things will fall apart, but I will stand by what I said when I gave you my heart. And if all is lost, then I say we build again from the start.” Nearing the end, Saeeda sang Caio’s song, “Ventre.” Written and sung by Caio in Portuguese, they realized Saeeda should be the one to sing it, and did she do it justice! “Let go your mind, let loose your spirit, be still in this place, only then can you hear it, close your eyes, and you’ll see, go on imagine anything, there’s no limit to what you dream.”
After dancing the Samba one night, Tim woke up with a tune in his head. Caio helped him turn it into a song, and the jazzy “Rio” was born. This song was the last to be played from the new album but the night wasn’t over yet.
Giving a nod to the family atmosphere at Vie de Boheme, brothers Max & Tim Ribner joined Tim and Caio on stage. While all these musicians have their own bands, they frequently perform with each other given the opportunity. Taken from his 2013 album, “Let Go, Jump in the River,” they performed “Jump In.” “Let go, we jump in the river, let go and jump in, we’re gonna.” (This would make a great theme song for Sunday’s “Big Float” on the Willamette.)
Next was “My Whole Heart,” written one day at 3:00 p.m. At 6:00 p.m., Tim took a shower during which he wrote a gospel song – and at 9:00 p.m. he realized they were the same song! Again, Saeeda’s vocals fit it perfectly.
Portland loves sing-a-longs, as does this author. “Gotta Have Love” provided us with the opportunity: “Gotta have love for the people, gotta have love for ourselves, gotta have love for our enemies, they might not have love for themselves.”
The evening ended with the fun, “Three Hawks,” written during a road trip adventure. It sounds just like a road trip song should: edgy, fast, and furious. Tim was “driving down the road one foot in the window, wind in his toes when he looked up and saw three red tailed hawk pass by.” Just as he thought, “hey man that’s odd,” one swooped down right in front of his car. “And with what he could swear was a nod, landed on the left-hand shoulder. Almost crashing his car he slammed on the brakes and pulled off to the side. That red tail had definitely caught his attention. Well, he opened the door, got out of the car and his jaw hit the floor cause that bird, he spoke. He said, ‘I think it’s time for an intervention.’ It’s time, it’s time, it’s time for you to fly….time to fly to the sun.”
It’s always a good time when Tim and the gang play at Vie. They draw an audience of diehard fans, and instantly acquire new ones. They are touring the Northwest until early August while Caio is here in the States. Next up for the duo is a 2015 album release in Portland, as well as in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Tim has just announced that he will be one of the featured speakers at the 2015 University of Nevada TEDx conference. It looks like 2015 will be a banner year for Tim. In the meantime, catch one of his shows when you get the chance. You will not be disappointed.
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