Célia Vaz with Choro Louco
Popular Brazilian artist Célia Vaz, has earned international recognition as a vocalist, guitarist, arranger, songwriter and educator. As an arranger, she has recorded over 15 albums with the best-selling Brazilian group Quarteto em Cy, considered the most important female vocal group of modern Brazilian music. In addition to her work with this quartet, Celia performs with Nos Quatro, nominated as Best MPB (Brazilian Popular Music), and finalist for Premio Visa competition. Vaz is also famed for her work with artists including Billy Eckstine, Joyce and the Rio Jazz Orchestra. As a performer, she has recorded and toured extensively within Japan, Europe and even Cuba.
Célia began her music studies in the '60s at the Brazilian Conservatory of Music, also taking guitar classes with Sidney Miller and Jards Macalé. After the recording of her song "Lembrança" by vocalist Dóris Monteiro, she dedicated herself fully to her music, winning a scholarship to Berklee College of Music for Arranging & Composing. Returning to Brazil in 1976, she continued her harmony studies alongside her active recording career.
Célia's first solo album, Mutação (Polygram) with guest artist Pat Metheny amongst others, was released in 1980. In the '80s, she organized and conducted the Orquestra Célia Vaz, which included Rosinha de Valença. It was in 1987 that she became musical director, arranger, and guitarist of the vocal group Quarteto em Cy.
Célia has taught vocal arrangement and harmony across Brazil at leading universities, and in Europe and the US as well.
Brazilian Choro has been around for over a hundred years, but in this country it's virtually unknown. David Grisman, Mike Marshall and a handful of others have helped introduce the music and the musicians to a larger audience, but it's still largely under the radar of most music listeners...Its beautiful melodies, complex harmonies, and syncopated rhythms combine elements of European folk and classical, ragtime, jazz, Latin, and African music creating a style that is uniquely Brazilian.
The members of Choro Louco got together about a year ago, to play through some choro tunes, and have been meeting irregularly ever since. They are driven by a love of the music and an interest in learning to play it. None have ever been to Brazil, or have experienced the culture that produces this music, but they're crazy enough to give it a try...hence the name, Choro Louco...
Carl Dimow, flute and guitar, has played jazz, classical, and klezmer music here and abroad with the Casco Bay Tummlers, and numerous other ensembles. Nicole Rabata, Carl's former student and now a teacher herself, is best known in celtic music circles, but also plays classical flute with the Colby College orchestra and the Bangor symphony. Joel Eckhaus comes from an old time/jazz/pop/vaudeville background and has applied his knowledge of the ukulele to the Cavaquinho, Brazil's version of the uke. Kris Day is perhaps the hardest working bass player in Portland with bluegrass, rockabilly, jazz, and rock bands booking up his evenings and teaching during the day. Eric Winter, who speaks and sings in both Spanish and Portuguese, plays pandeira (the Brazilian tambourine) and percussion with us and Portland's Primo Cubano.
Mayo Street Arts (View)
10 Mayo Street
Portland , ME 04101
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