Since their debut in 2003, Com Você has been revisiting the classics of Brazilian music and offering them in fresh, new perspective. The group is led by Polish-born vocalist and arranger Maggie Grebowicz and Texan-born saxophonist Stan Killian. From the bossa nova onwards, they arrange well-known repertoire for the acoustic jazz quintet format. The singer switches freely between Portuguese, Polish, Spanish, English, and word-less vocal, and arrangements feature rich sax-vocal interaction and a variety of complex rhythmic patterns. The group also revisits compositions by American jazz artists whose work engages Brazilian traditions, like Wayne Shorter, Pat Metheny, and Jack DeJohnette. Against the backdrop of today's obsession with bossa nova, Jazzreview.com describes this project as "unique." Peter Westbrook writes: “Overall it is remarkable how these seemingly diverse elements fit together…. It all works, as the singer bends each piece to her unique styling, hands it off to the various soloists, and then reclaims it for a final rendering…. For lovers of both jazz and Brazilian music, this is something fresh that deserves a hearing.”
"Candeias" is their long-awaited first CD. Lovers of vocal music will be delighted by Maggie's sound, which has been described as "wistful, pure" (All About Jazz New York) and "soft, sensuous" (LA Jazz Scene). Lovers of instrumental jazz can sink their teeth into the extended, virtuosic solos, fluid arrangements and the sax tone of Stan Killian, which Scott Yanow describes as "muscular and modern." Eddy Hobizal, who here plays Fender Rhodes, won third place in the International Theolonious Monk Jazz Competition in 1989. Andy Langham (piano) and Hamilton Price (bass) have performed with jazz greats Tom Harrell, Sam Rivers, Mike Stern, Dewey Redman, Randy Brecker, and Ravi Coltrane. Drummer Kyle Thompson has worked with the legendary arranger and producer Stephen Barber, both live and in the studio. Special guest Philippe Vieux, who here plays baritone saxophone and flute, has worked with Cedar Walton, Horace Silver, Tito Puente and appears on recordings by Latin jazz legends Eddie Palmieri and Patato Valdez. The CD consists of new arrangements of Brazilian classics by Jobim, Edu Lobo, Caetano Veloso, Marcos Valle, Roberto Menescal, George Gershwin, and Pat Metheny. All About Jazz New York describes the recording as "inviting" and as the name Com Você ("with you") indicates, this is an invitation share intimately in the band's demanding explorations of this classic repertoire. Scott Yanow writes: "These renditions are fresh, relevant, and contemporary without watering down the idiom's atmosphere and flavor... The overall results are delightful."
The review in Cadence Magazine reads:
“Candeias” features the quintet Com Você in a program of lovely Brazilian melodies where Gershwin’s “S’Wonderful” almost sounds as if it were composed by Astrud Gilberto and her husband João. Singer Maggie Grebowicz interprets that chestnut in English, while most of the program features her delicate Portuguese. She offers a casual demeanor and shares the spotlight with the band. In Portuguese, the name of this quintet means With You. Appropriate to the presentation of their wares, Com Você is with us from start to finish as they pursue dreamy landscapes and fill each one with rhythms that sashay eloquently. Double bass and drums provide a thorough foundation that comes alive under our feet as if each selection were something new. Bossa nova and samba have been around for quite some time; yet, this ensemble delivers each piece with a freshness that proves memorable. Philippe Vieux’s baritone saxophone replaces tenor on two selections and his flute adds warmth to another while Eddy Hobizal replaces the pianist on Fender Rhodes through five numbers. The ample variety allows each piece to have its own personality. Grebowicz gives each song a gentle texture and opens the door for her musical partners to color with authority. “Candeias” is a winning debut for an unforgettable team that loves and respects the quaint Brazilian tradition.
The review in French magazine Openmag reads:
"The sweetness of her voice is so soothing that the singer Maggie Grebowicz could calm a storm over Rio Bay. Adding to the seduction of this new-style bossa nova is the virtuosic accompaniment of such talented saxophonists as Stan Killian on tenor and Philippe Vieux on baritone. Another innovation: two keyboards provide a colorful harmonic foundation (Andy Langham and Eddy Hobizal on Fender Rhodes). Com Você superbly enriches the classics of Jobim and of Caetano Veloso. They also brilliantly revisit Gershwin's 'S'Wonderful.' Exquisite and promising."