I think the first Jobim song I remember hearing was Desafinado. It was on a Herb Alpert album my dad bought when I was about three years old. I still remember him coming home from work through the front door with it tucked under his arm. When I was older, around eight or nine, it was probably my favorite song on the album but I did not have any idea who wrote it.
Years later after finding my way to the legendary Getz/Gilberto album that contained the hit 'Girl From Ipanema' I knew who Jobim was but I did not fully appreciate his genius. More years down the road I did some deeper exploration of Astrud Gilberto recordings. She did the vocal on the Getz, 'Girl From Ipanema' recording. I really started become a fan of Jobim. By the time I jumped into Jobim's Wave album I was all in.
A lot of times when I'm hacking away at the keyboard I'll try to noodle away at songs when they pop into my head. I find it a good exercise to try and figure out chord progressions by what I can hear in my head before I start grinding through a recording to lift the progression. It did not take long to realize there was a lot of complexity happening in the harmony and melody. Just try to write out the Wave melody without sitting at a keyboard first. When you're casually listening to the song it just flows by and doesn't feel unnatural or overly complex.
Wave was the first of the 3 songs in the playlist that I covered. I don't think I ever sat down and lifted any of the arrangement form any particular recording or chart. In fact my my melody is a mutation of what might be considered the original version that sort of evolved from playing through the chord progression as an accompaniment.
So Tinha De Ser Com Voce was a song I became a fan of after hearing an Ellis Regina / Jobim recording of it. I used that version to lift the changes. Playing the changes alone didn't seem to capture the basic essence of the tune. Usually when I'm playing a progression and imagining or singing the melody on top I get the essence of the composition. When I decided to create a version of this tune I started by creating a latin drum pattern and just looping it. I then blocked out the melody with a synth patch. After that I blocked in the bass. When I listened back to it I suddenly heard that essence I wasn't hearing before. You can never underestimate the power of percussion and bass. Adding the chordal accompaniment just cemented the tension between the bass and melody.
Creating these tracks took me too a next level connection with the music and was worth the endeavour for that reason alone.