Manu Lafer through this “naked” version of his 2008 album Ta Shemá, summarizes the release of his songbook comprising more than a hundred charts for acoustic guitar with original recorded lyrics and tunes and spanning more than 20 years of career.
He presents 13 tracks with his acoustic guitar original arrangements and no orchestration, what characterized the original album (hence the word “vaults” in its title). As producer Alexandre Siqueira puts it, the tracks are comparable to snapshots, portraiting the former recordings, restaurations of mp3 files. Here the attractive, original, authorial approach on the melodies, rhythms and the acoustic guitar are protagonists.
There are only two songs the author covered: Cristo Nasceu Na Bahia (sang by Mateus Aleluia, a late 1920ies forgotten theatrical success) and Vamos A La Cama (a somehow obscure Spanish speaking countries TV hit from the 1960ies). There is but a song recorded with piano instead of acoustic guitar, Da Janela.
Ta Shemá, along with other of Lafer’s albums, such as Doze Fotogramas, Grandeza, and Frum, gathers Brazilian varied traditions and points to Jewish influence.
Thesaurus Vaults – Ta Shemá synthetises Lafer’s original and multifaceted style as a songwriter, in his cathalogue of almost 400 songs, influenced by such names as João Gilberto, Gilberto Gil, Jorge Ben Jor, Chico Buarque, Paulinho da Viola and Caetano Veloso.