Very rarely is an unreliable, unpredictable, explosive and at times uncontainable personality in music matched with such a talented, emotional and subtle soul. Enter: Tim Maia. As a Brazilian Jazz/Soul singer, Tim ironically embodied all that is Rock n’ Roll.
He is said to have begun his career in music via New York City in the late 50′s and early 60′s but was quickly sent back to Brazil after a run-in with the law. Back in his homeland, he found himself integrating American Soul throughout his native rhythms of Brazil, creating styles never heard before in the country.
He released numerous albums beginning in 1970 (many of which were self-titled Tim Maia) and quickly gained notoriety and interest with hits like “These Are the Songs” (later re-recorded by Pieno Verão), “Azul da Cor do Mar” and “Não Quero Dinheiro (Só Quero Amar)”….but this hype was short lived. Maia’s drug habits and spiritual passion often took precedent over meetings, professionalism, business etiquette and at times his own shows. His political motivations and involvement in cult-like groups is also said to have hindered his path to further acclamation and recognition.
All that said, and with all of Maia’s curious personal issues, few have been able to disregard the iconic imprint he left on Brazilian/World music. He fused American Soul with Brazilian Samba and Baião, creating a beautiful and cheerful Soul/Funk/Jazz/Latin stew – that just tastes so good.
According to NPR, on October 2nd, Luaka Bop is planning to release Nobody Can Live Forever: The Existential Soul of Tim Maia which features some of Maia’s most notable (and maybe some overlooked) tracks throughout his career. Watch the preview below: