« La samba était entrée dans notre vie »
Anouk Aimée - A Man and a Woman

In 2021 we moved to Italy with our daughter Ida.

"Et voilà, c’est une longue histoire… ", (And there it is, it’s a long story…)
The lyrics of the song, A man and a woman are one perfect way to introduce it.

It is indeed a long story or more precisely converging stories, first of all that of a first name Antoine, one of first names chosen at my birth by my Mom in echo of Antoine Duroc, the little boy she saw a few years earlier in Lelouch's film. I was in a way already marked by this film and soon by this soundtrack.

In the mid-80s, swimming as enthusiasts in a sea of vinyl albums, we were keen to explore certain labels, certain music producers in order to enrich our sound library already very eclectic : jazz, soul, pop, funk, samba and of course at the crossroads of all, the film soundtracks.
Roy Ayers, Marvin Gaye, Keith Jarrett, Vinicius de Moraes, James Brown, Caetano Veloso, Bob Dylan, Sahib Shihab, Marcos Valle, Lalo Schifrin, Miles Davis, Sabu Martinez, Baden Powell, Herbie Hancock, Dave Gruisin, Joao Gilberto, John Coltrane, and so many others already made up our sound Pantheon.

Among all these albums, one had a somewhat special character : the soundtrack of Moshe Mizrahi’s film “Les stances à Sophie” recorded in Paris on July 22nd 1970 by the Art Ensemble of Chicago. In listening to “Thème de Yoyo”, this title of more than 9 minutes long, we understood to what extent a piece of music could constitute a traveling companion, a life companion, a rhythm familiar and reassuring, a fascinating harmony. A title that grabs you by the ear from the moment you hear the first notes but that almost 40 years later retains its shadow and mystery.

It’s these rare encounters that push you to know more and hear more.

It is the Art Ensemble of Chicago that pushed us to examine the world of Pierre Barouh and his house publisher : Saravah. The most laudatory words are not enough to describe this man’s passion for music, cinema, travel and well beyond that a man curious about everything and open to everyone who described himself as having « l’obsession de la disponibilité » (an obsession with availability).

Pierre Barouh will make Saravah not a simple music publishing house but a village square, a meeting and exchange place where we bring as much as we receive. An open private club to and for all.
To try to understand this utopian project we examine its genesis : in 1965 faced with the refusal of all the publishers requested, Pierre Barouh, Claude Lelouch and Francis Lai founded Saravah in order to publish the music of A man and a woman, the new film by Claude Lelouch. Some months later, in 1966 the film won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival and the Oscar for best foreign film. The success is immense, its soundtrack becoming one of the most famous and hummed in the world.



Apart from the iconic track “Un homme et une femme”, the album contains this title co-signed by Pierre Barouh, Baden Powell and Vinicius de Moraes “Samba Saravah”, a French version of the sublime “Samba de Bençao” from 1963 by Vinicius, an ode to life balanced in a samba tune :

Alegria é a melhor coisa que existe
Joy is the best thing that exists

Cuidado, companheiro!
A vida é pra valer
E não se engane não, tem uma só
Watch out, buddy!

Life is for real
And make no mistake, there is only one

A vida não é de brincadeira, amigo
A vida é arte do encontro
Embora haja tanto desencontro pela vida
Life ain't no joke, buddy
Life is the art of encounter
Although there is so much disagreement in life

Samba Saravah said Pierre Barouh “recorded in Rio after a sleepless night in one take on a Revox will condition the entire sound of Saravah”. For us it will condition our steps : life is the art of encounter.

Sarava means in the Afro-Brazilian religion (Candomble) "the force that animates nature", by a semantic slip it has become a Brazilian exclamation which is used for “Good luck! ", " Blessing! ". Pierre Barouh added a final H so as to merge it with his own surname.

When we moved to Italy with our daughter Ida, we wanted to keep busy personally from the olive growing on our property. These 1148 olive trees, some bi-centenarians, were waiting for our care, our gestures, our attention. For this we have trained ourselves, we studied, listened, observed and when we founded our agricultural company we invoked this famous force which animates nature : Sarava!
A few months after our arrival, we discovered an Italian album by Sergio Endrigo from 1969, “La vita, Amico, è l'arte dell'incontro”, with the opening “Samba delle benedizioni”, the Italian version of Vinicius' Samba of Moraes. Can we still believe in coincidence ? French people living in Italy, lovers of Brazilian music, our Tenuta Sarava ( Sarava estate in Italian) was born under the best auspices.

Because we both love Japan, because we have forged strong bonds with Japan through our previous careers, we wanted to export our olive oil almost exclusively to the Japanese market. In December 2022, we organized a small event in an Italian restaurant in Tokyo. A Japanese friend invites one of her acquaintances, a man as discreet as he is exciting and talented : Seigen Ono, a composer, musician, producer, sound engineer.

That evening Seigen brought some anchovies in a small bag, we had some bread and our olive oil. We talked, talked and talked some more. He explained to us that he composed a music called “Olive tree for peace”, we talked about Sarava, samba… We have to see each other again as soon as possible, at his place in his studio to continue this conversation. We are always keen to educate ourselves in disorder, as Pierre Barouh said, the opportunity is ideal.
Seigen welcomes us into his studio, we listen to Bossa, we watch Cinema Paradiso, a lot of joy but also emotion, moist eyes, moments of sharing. Seigen explains to us that he knew Pierre well. Pierre frequently came to visit him by scooter when he was in Tokyo
In December 2023, back in Tokyo we went to see Seigen to drop him off a few bottles of our latest harvest. He handed us one of his latest CDs, from September 2023: “Le pollen”, Pierre's legendary 1982 concert in Tokyo. Seigen was on sound recording at this concert, with a unique version of Samba Saravah on track 12.

Is this what Pierre Barouh called « une histoire à la morale confuse » (a confused moral story), or is life just the art of encounter?

Eléonore & Fabien
Lucca 2024

"Il y a des années où l’on a envie de ne rien faire"
(There are years when we want to do nothing)

“What the sentence wants to advise is not idleness, but a reflection on the freedom and availability that one must maintain in the closed system in which one lives. That one must be able to stop, doubt, look, do something else. That too is all Saravah”
Pierre Barouh – November 1974