Preview: Eliane Elias will focus on Brazilian jazz at the MCG

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Eliane Elias would like to put to rest the idea that being a traveling musician is glamorous.

"We're always on the road and subject to all kinds of things [such as] flight delays," she says.

"It's hard on your body -- the change of hours, the change of food, your habits." Not to mention dealing with travel arrangements in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, which struck the East Coast earlier this week.

Eliane Elias

Where: Manchester Craftsmen's Guild, North Side.

When: 7 and 9:30 p.m. Friday.

Tickets: $52.50; 412-322-0800.

But the Sao Paulo-born pianist/vocalist soldiers on, performing two shows on Friday at the Manchester Craftsmen's Guild's Jazz Hall with her trio, also comprising bassist and husband Marc Johnson and drummer/persussionist Rafael Barata.

Ms. Elias, who began playing professionally at 17, moved to New York in the early 1980s and, once stateside, joined the fusion band Steps Ahead. Her first recording, "Amanda," a collaboration with then-husband Randy Brecker, was released in 1985 and named for their daughter.

The new album, the all-instrumental and all-original "Swept Away," is her 22nd as a leader.

The tunes were composed and arranged by either her or Mr. Johnson and feature tenor saxophonist Joe Lovano and drummer Joey Baron. "We'll feature two songs," she says.

The Guild shows, however, "will be focused on Brazilian music," she says, noting that Mr. Johnson is the only non-Brazilian in the band -- "but he has a Brazilian spirit."

She promises music from composers Antonio Carlos Jobim, Gilberto Gil and Dorival Caymmi and noted that audiences respond positively.

"The people really get the message and feel the rhythm," she says.


Rick Nowlin: or 412-263-3871.


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