Cecelia Tenconi – Amazon Lily
(CafePercussion – 2001)
by S.H. Watkins, Sr.
Cecilia Tenconi’s great debut CD Amazon Lily is a well crafted mix of sultry saxaphone and expressive flute performances (both by Tenconi) and good compositions (most by Tenconi). On Urban Summer (an original track and my favorite), Tenconi comes out Smoking with her sax, riding the simmering waves from the bass, then turning against the piano and surfing all the way back across the hot track. The melody is strong, with keyboardist Dave Kioski contributing a very old-school Lorber-ish solo in the middle.
As good as Tenconi’s sax is on Urban Summer, she is an even better flautist, having performed as a soloist with the Orchestra of the National Radio in Argentina when she was only 16! Since then she has performed with the likes of Ray Baretto, Chico O’Farrell, Tania Maria, Manhattan Transfer and Herbie Mann, to name a few.
The airy rendition of Milton Nascimento’s Mountain feels as if it has captured the essence of the Brazilian-Mountain experience, with Tenconi providing the lead vocals and flute. Most of the songs on the CD are originals, and most of the songs on the CD are Smoking. From the classic Malambito to the funky Wife’s Life, the compositions are strong and well performed. Tenconi’s CD is a welcome and talented surprise and should go far.