I was born in Lisbon and grew up in Almada, where my family moved to when I was four years old. Even to this day, that’s where my shelter has been: Costa da Caparica, a beach nearby where I spent my early years, enjoying the Atlantic Ocean and the sun.
I was still in my adolescence when I left there to discover the world. At first, in a cold country, Sweden, where I studied anthropology in the university of Lund and started playing music. After that period, I moved back to Brazil, where I once again met my native language spoken with tropical sweetness and being sung uniquely; a passion that I had nourished since my childhood. After 23 years in São Paulo’s “stone jungle”, I moved up to another jungle; this time rather real than metaphorical: the amazon. Manaus, the meeting spot of the two longest rivers in the planet, as well as the meeting place of multiple civilizations.
I’ve been settled in Manaus since 2001, where i was invited by the Amazonas culture secretariat to run the Amazonas Band, an artistic corps at the amazon opera house, a big band sponsored by the state of Amazonas’s government.
It was in the 70’s that I started getting into music, during the time I lived in Sweden, where I also began my music studies. I started out as a drummer and had the chance to perform with musicians that , eventually, later on, became quite well- known in the music scenario, like Jonas Hellborg – who became a member of the Mahavishnu orchestra in the 80’s- and the Norwegian free jazz saxophonist, Frode Gjerstad, leader of the free jazz big band, Circulazione Total.
As I moved to Brazil in 78, I chose São Paulo to dwell in. I could barely imagine at the time that the amazon would conquer me 20 years later...I worked in São Paulo’s music scenario for several years, having my participation on Interchanges, a group led by bassist and composer Celio Barros as a highlight.
I started getting into arranging for big band in the 90’s and had the pleasure to have one of my works published in the USA in 2000.
As a musical educator I taught at the Tatuí’s Conservatory, in São Paulo, for several years where I also coordinated the percussion department. In 2002, I worked as a coordinator in the Amazonas State University’s music department. Besides, I developed a college level jazz program for a private educational institution in São Paulo, officially approved and recognized by the Brazilian government in 2002.
In Manaus I moved on with my studies in ethnomusicology and earned a doctor’s degree in 2014, at Unicamp, Campinas, São Paulo state, presenting a thesis about the Boi-bumbá, an Amazonian folkloric expression. Prior to that, in 2003, I had earned a master’s degree in arranging also at Unicamp.
At the secretariat of culture in the state of Amazonas, I am also in charge of the artistic direction of the Amazonas Jazz Festival. For many years now, the Amazonas band has hosted guest musicians with whom we have shared the stage, both at the jazz festival as well as at the project Amazonas band invites.
Some of the most prominent names in the contemporary jazz scene have shared the stage with the Amazonas band for the past decade. The band has brought out two records: Amazonas jazz with Vinicius Dorin, launched in 2010; and Amazonas Band invites Gilson Peranzzetta and Mauro Senise, brought out in 2013.
The Amazonas Band started out in 2000 as part of the Amazonas state artistic corps. The group performs regularly in Manaus, and since 2006 it has been showcasing the Amazonas Jazz Festival’s opening evening. Since 2005, the band has hosted soloists, arrangers and conductors amongst the most important and significant in the world scenario, for performances at the amazon opera house.
On that star constellation we could highlight noble names, such as: David Liebman, Bob Mintzer, Cláudio Roditi, Mauro Senise, Gilson Peranzzetta, Daniel Barry, Daniel D'Alcântara, Leila Pinheiro, Márcia Siqueira, Vinícius Dorin, Ed Sarath, Chico Pinheiro, Marcelo Coelho, John Fedchock, Jeremy Pelt, Jimmy Greene, Dave Hanson, Felipe Lamoglia, Altair Martins, Proveta, Rodrigo Ursaia, to name a few.
- Article: "Repente" ISIM’s journal.