A Beautiful Live Performance by Camila Meza & the Nectar Orchestra [VIDEO]
Some musicians don’t have to expend much effort to achieve radiance. Camila Meza is one of these — a singer-songwriter and improvising guitarist originally from Santiago, Chile, and now a luminous fixture on the scene in New York. Ámbar, her major-label debut, just out on Masterworks, captures the deep synthesis in her music, with a chamber-jazz cohort she calls the Nectar Orchestra.
For this Jazz Night in America concert video, Meza convened the Nectar Orchestra in a Brooklyn loft for a small audience of friends. The intimacy of the setting perfectly suits her jewel-like vocal tone, as well as the breathing string arrangements by bassist Noam Weisenberg.
Bookended by originals “Kallfu,” written in tribute to the indigenous Mapuche people of Southern Chile, and “Ámbar,” a song of healing, the concert also features versions of two touchstone Brazilian songs, “Milagre Dos Peixes” (Fernando Brant/Milton Nascimento) and “Olha Maria” (Antonio Carlos Jobim/Chico Buarque/Vinícius de Moraes).
Meza also expresses earnest sociopolitical ideals in a song with English lyrics: “This Is Not America.” David Bowie recorded it with the Pat Metheny Group in 1985, the year Meza was born. She not only rises to the song’s challenge; she makes its anguish feel as if it emanates from her core. Not to mention the hyper-articulate guitar solo she fashions — just one of several reasons her performance feels aglow. —NATE CHINEN
This concert was recorded on March 26th, 2019 at a private loft in Brooklyn, N.Y.
0:10 - “Kallfu”
6:01 - “All Your Colors”
12:23 - “Milagres Dos Peixes”
18:41 - “Olha Maria”
24:24 - “This Is Not America”
30:01 - “Ámbar”
Camila Meza (guitar, voice)
Eden Ladin (keyboard, piano)
Noam Weisenberg (bass)
Keita Ogawa (drums, percussion)
Ludovica Burtone (violin)
Tomoko Omura (violin)
Leonor Falcon (viola)
Brian Sanders (cello)
Director of Photography: Nickolai Hammar
Audio Mixing Engineer: Dave Darlington