Listen to this

A look at some new music.

Published March 11, 2007

Fun in the sun edition

Sergio Mendes

Album: Timeless Concord

In stores: Now

Why we care: Mas que humps? Absolutamente! This '06 tribute to the Brazilian king of cocktail swing might as well be the new Black Eyed Peas album. BEP's shamelessly funky Will.i.am produces and stars, bringing with him Ms. Fergalicious and such party pals as Justin Timberlake, John Legend and Stevie Wonder. The bestselling Brazilian artist of all time, Sergio is there to add piano, class and cool.

Why we like it: Mendes' sexy grooves and catchy riffs, plus the extra oomph of Black Eyed beats, will make you feel as if you're lounging on a private beach, a perky cabana boy waiting to indulge your every whim. Will these mojitos suffice, senorita? Yes, Pablo. Yes they will.

Reminds us of: The bottom of a highball glass.

Download these: Mas Que Nada, Surfboard and Loose Ends

Grade: B+


Wyclef Jean

Album: The Carnival (Columbia)

In stores: Now

Why we care: This 1997 disc from the former Fugee is a madcap affair informed by his Haitian heritage plus his love for rap, reggae and pop. It's party music with a brain, much like 'Clef's current hit duet with Shakira, Hips Don't Lie.

Why we like it: Whether it's the street toughness of Bee Gees vamp We Trying to Stay Alive, the acoustic regret of fidelity ode Gone Till November or the delicate soul of Mona Lisa, the gone-troppo tunes never fail to suck you in. The album's frenzied island finish is either a great night finisher or night starter. (Fair warning: The 'tween-song skits are annoying, which is even more reason to get an iPod.)

Reminds us of: Rum runners, and the inevitable conga line that follows.

Download these: Guantanamera, Gone Till November and We Trying to Stay Alive

Grade: A


Bob Marley & the Wailers

Album: Talkin' Blues (Tuff Gong)

In stores: Now

Why we care: One of our favorite albums of all time, this 1991 live disc was recorded in the mid '70s, with the "rude boys" at the height of their riddim-making power.

Why we like it: You won't see the "hits" on here; if you want Three Little Birds, there's always Legend. Instead, these are Bob's lesser-known gems, presented and remastered in a clean, warm recording. His famous band includes Peter Tosh on guitar, Aston "Familyman" Barrett on drums and a phenomenally slinky Earl "Wire" Lindo on keyboards.

Reminds us of: The Pork Pit, Montego Bay, Jamaica. Best jerked meats on the island, mon. Get half chicken, half ribs. Trust us.

Download these: Kinky Reggae, You Can't Blame the Youth and Bend Down Low. (Honestly? Just download the whole thing.)

Grade: A



Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

Song: Dogs on the Run

Album: Southern Accents (MCA)

In stores: Now

Why we care: Petty's figurative Florida is usually a landlocked affair, all parts greasy garages and haunted highways. But on this overlooked '85 album cut, the Gainesville guy washes up on a beach and tumbles into the arms of a young bleached blond. This rocker is about where you're going more than where you've been - the very stuff of shoreline daydreams.

Why we like it: Dogs on the Run has all the right ingredients for a road trip classic: a floor-it beat, jangly guitars, a killer brass section and great quotable parts: "She said, 'Honey, ain't it funny/How a crowd gathers 'round/Anyone living life without a net?' "

Reminds us of: Driving 88 in a 55.

Song grade: A

Album grade: A

Sean Daly can be reached at sdaly@sptimes.com or (727) 893-8467. His blog is at blogs.tampabay.com/popmusic.