By Patricia Palumbo
We are listening to Literalmente Loucas at home when a tall, slim and beautiful young woman comes to the door. I’m in a daze until Karina Zeviani introduces herself as the singer who recorded Confessional with Tono, on our Marina Lima tribute CD. We just had to focus, really – beauty can sometimes knock us off balance.
I’d already seen Karina on stage at the Auditório do Ibirapuera singing at her friend Tiê’s show, and had been very impressed at her presence, her strength and confidence, and her clear, clean voice. When Zé Pedro suggested getting her on board, I agreed on the spot.
Now Karina is in Brazil, having spent several years abroad working as a model and singing with the cool Nouvelle Vague and Thievery Corporation. With her first solo project in hand, she’s ready to stun audiences with her beauty and talent. The album was recorded around the world, with several collaborations, but is unquestionably hers. We will meet someone who discovered her own voice, as many do, singing live in bars – only in her case it was a bar in Germany. When she was a child in Jaboticabal, a small town in the interior of São Paulo, she would sing palindrome versions of the songs on the radio. When she was 8, she would sing Elis Regina backwards. She was the mascot of the town band, playing and singing marches, waltzes, and the rest of the typical repertoire of a small town band. While she had fun, the music worked its magic.
Today, listening to her CD while she tells me her stories of London, New York, Hamburg… I can see the little girl having fun singing. She tells me, happily, about the origins or her songs, their motives and inspiration. Sometimes it’s about a person, sometimes it tells a story, sometimes it is about simple, everyday love, and sometimes it’s a trip to a Parisian cemetery that becomes a party. No wonder her album has its road movie moments, a sort of film score mixing Norah Jones, Tarantino and Wim Wenders, a rickety circus tent, and sweet popcorn around the fountain in the village square. Her music is strongly feminine and modern, translating a lot of information into sound.
Very soon Karina Zeviani will knock on your door with Buiu, Miguelito, Maria Rosa, Água de Coco, Amor Inventado, Meu Lobo, The Beast, Muda Mutante and much more. She’s back from her travels, her baggage full of that Jaboticabal that toured the world.
Let her in and give in to her enchantment. Beauty can be shocking but it’s good for you.