Flor da Terra

performing hidden treasures of 20th century Brazilian music

GoodbluebackgroundcrppdForPageThis modern instrumental quartet focuses on the lesser known classics of 20th century Brazilian music, rather than the standard Bossa Nova repertoire most often performed by American musicians who play Brazilian jazz. With a configuation of saxophone, bass, drums, and Brazilian guitar, Flor da Terra presents some of the rich repertoire that exists in Brazilian music, ranging from early 20th century choro to 21st century modern jazz. Members of the group are experienced educators, and also offer workshops and educationally based performances.

The Members of “Flor da Terra”

Guitarist Billy Newman has been performing for over 20 years. Starting in Jazz, he performed in the 80’s with artists such as Dave Douglas and Vincent Herring. Since 1992 he has been traveling to Brazil, spending months there to investigate the myriad forms of music. In 1995 he began forming groups to perform principally Brazilian instrumental music at New York cultural institutions including the Guggenheim Museum, Brooklyn Museum, and MOMA, as well as at colleges, clubs and libraries. After 1998, Billy developed a serious passion for Choro music, studying and playing with musicians including Rogerio Souza and Rodrigo Lessa in Rio de Janeiro. In August 2000 he travelled to Recife and performed at the Conservatorio Pernambucano. In 2004 he taught in Brazil and performed in Rio de Janeiro and in 2007 gave jazz workshops and performed in Florianopolis. He has performed all over the New York Area with his groups, the Brazilian Acoustic Ensemble and Brooklyn Brazil Bop. In 2006 Billy was awarded a prestigious composer’s residency at Yaddo. Composer’s residencies followed in both 2007 and 2008 in the famous MacDowell Colony.

Saxophonist Eric Schugren is a recent transplant to New York from California. Eric grew up in a musical family in the San Francisco Bay Area and moved to Los Angeles to study Jazz and Ethnomusicology at UCLA. While living in LA, Eric had the opportunity to study and/or perform with many great musicians, including Harold Land, Billy Higgins, Kenny Burrell, Airto Moreira, and Horace Tapscott. Eric co-led a salsa band for several years and through this community came opportunities to explore Brazilian jazz, including performing and recording with Lula y Afro Brazil. As a composer Eric has produced a critically acclaimed CD of his own material, and several soundtracks for video and film. In 2008 Eric was a Guest Artist and clinician at the International Jazz Academy in Kracow, Poland.

Drummer and pandeiro player Conor Meehan has performed internationally and appeared on over 25 recordings. While still working on his Bachelor’s Degree (Purchase College ’04), he began touring with blues guitarist Albert Cummings, hip-hop group Heiruspecs, and singer Sonya Kitchell. Conor has performed in Japan, Europe, Brazil and North America. He currently lives in New York where he regularly plays with artists including Tessa Souter Band, The Smooth Maria, Charles Neville Quartet. Conor has taught as an adjunct faculty member at Williams College since 2005. He will also be a faculty member at the “Jazz in July” summer workshop at UMASS Amherst and “Interplay Jazz Workshop” in 2009.

Bassist Leco Reis is Brazilian-born and an alumnus of Berklee College of Music and Aaron Copland School Of Music. He began his musical journey at a young age under Maestro Luis Motta. After working with a variety of bands and singers in Brazil, he moved to Boston to attend Berklee, where he became a fixture of the Boston music scene. Since moving to New York, Leco has worked with Graham Haynes, Paul Winter, Paulo Braga, Aloisio Aguiar, Ze Luis, Ogans, Clarice Assad, Eric Plaks Quintet, Brooklyn Brazil Bop, Felipe Baden Powell and others., and has toured in both Asia and Europe.

Ellen Azorin, President
Cantaloupe Music Productions, Inc.
Phone: 212.724.2400
E-Mail: music.inquiry@cantaloupeproductions.com

Essa Mare

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Ponteio

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Samba de Orly

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Choro Pra Ze

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