Herb Alpert Presents
Label: Concord Records
Sergio Mendes had already released a slew of albums for a variety of major labels before he finally struck gold at Herb Alpert's new record label with his Brasil '66 incarnation. This is Mendes' first outing with Brasil '66, and the single "Mas Que Nada" (written by the young Jorge Ben) became an era-defining hit, helping the album into the Top 10. The rest of the platter doesn't match that hit, but most selections come pretty close, with show tunes like "The Joker" standing tall next to Brazilian numbers such as "Berimbau." Great cover, too.