By Patrícia Palumbo
As a child, she used to imitate Rita Pavone, as a teenager she did backing vocals on the older brother's band, Dante, who is now her partner, arranger and musician of her band. The arts university has helped to free the mind to the music and it was at that time that she met the boys of Rumo, a men’s band looking for a female singer. She found herself in the midst of the Vanguarda Paulista and thence came the major partners Itamar Assumpção and Luiz Tatit.
In solo career, she started showing her tropicalist and classical versatility by singing Roberto and Erasmo, Lamartine Babo and Ary Barroso, Domenico Modugno, as well as the partners Zé Miguel Wisnik, Itamar, Tatit.
On the cover of her first recording, the image of the ballerina that marks her performance on stage still today. Tom Zé was right in saying that the child’s nickname sounds like a Hai Cai, small and strong, a synthesis that also expresses the two adjectives often applied to the singer: tenderness and elegance. That was in 1988, when she won the Sharp Award as best revelation singer of the year.
With the experience of her long history as an independent artist, once she told me: "What I do is music and not just entertainment - and, without noticing, Ná Ozzetti became a reference. One of her partners in this new work is Zélia Duncan, in Supernatural, and she says: "She is one of my voices, one of my singers. Being close to her music is a gift. Singer of a very singular expression, she leads anyone to understand the reason why the human voice is so called an instrument.”
The album that celebrates 30 years of Ná Ozzetti's career was given a more than perfect title: MY BACKYARD. Ná has an atavistic link with nature - I love to tell that she is able to paddle a caiçara canoe standing up. From her backyard songs grow out, partnerships take root, projects mature like fruits. For a long time she studied Carmen Miranda trying to understand her swing, her frolic way - and in 2009 BALANGANDÃS was released, a whole album dedicated to the repertoire of our little remarkable.
A backyard is like a swamp, a spring, a fertile place, emotional, familiar, where live all together her dogs, her friends, lovers and, in this case, music. The poet and songwriter Alice Ruiz told me of a sunrise that brought to life the song Baú de Guardados. Always plenty of musical themes, Alice heard Ná doing her vocal exercises and, farther out, Martha Ozzetti playing the flute. She ran for a paper and her "stones, losses, penalties" have turned into "jewelry, gemstones, pearls." In a conversation with Neco Prates, watching the shadow of a leafy
tree on a small mango tree, was born the song “Acordo de Amor”. Both lyrics fell totally finished in the lap of housewife who splits herself between the piano, the kitchen and, of course, the backyard.
The expression of spoken song, the technique of classical singing and the birds' school made the music find its way naturally into the body of Ná Ozzetti.
Ná Ozzetti thinks about the interpretation already with the instruments, making arrangements. The piano she learned to play as a child is her partner in this process. And the quality of her musical themes is certified by the rigorous Itamar Assumpção, who received her first tunes on a cassette tape with a request of some sort of feedback. He immediately sent back three whole lyrics.
For this new work, Ná has sent a melody on solo piano for the poet and composer Makely Ka, a new partner and one more fan: "I stood there trying to hear her voice, to find words that would fit. I usually listen to the melody until keeping it in mind, until the words begin to sprout. But that one came out almost at once, I believe the melody came from Ná already very round, very suggestive". The beautiful result was the song “Onde a Vista Alcança.”
About each song on this disc I'll still talk a lot on the radio, there is not enough room in the text. I just need to say that “Entre o Amor e o Mar” touches me deeply, the lyrics of Luiz Tatit is really beautiful, the arrangement is delicate and chic. “Tupi”, a partnership with Arthur Nestrovski, is like a child’s dream.
The musicians around her to celebrate 30 years of career are exceptional, as usual: Dante Ozzetti (guitars), Mário Manga (guitars, cello, tenor guitar), Sérgio Reze (drums and melodic gongs) and Zé Alexandre Carvalho (bass).
They are part of that gang that chat with notes, melodies, harmonies, improvisations where no one gets lost.
It's a 30-year history, impossible to fit everything in here. But let us number some points: the cd NÁ, released in 1994, won the Sharp Award for best album and best arranger (Dante Ozzetti) of the year; the lovely LOVE LEE RITA, released in 1996, placed the song Modinha among the three most played in Rio de Janeiro in that year; the sublime duets of piano and voice with André Mehmari, as from 2000, were recorded in remarkable cds and dvds; the prize for best performer in the Brazilian Music Festival was Worth the excellent cd SHOW, in 2001.
What really matters is that Ná Ozzetti thrills. She bewitches with her voice, does it naturally and better each time. I do not hesitate to say that she is one of the most beautiful voices of this country, one of the truest singers, an interpreter at the service of music. To visit her backyard is a privilege and it gives more than samba. Let's gladly taste the fruits of various scents coming from there. To our delight, let’s hope for 30 years more to come.