From Brazil: the great samba tradition lives on!

martinaliaforwebsitepageDaughter of samba legend Martinho da Vila, Mart’nália was born and bred in the heart of the Rio de Janeiro samba scene. Today she is one of Brazil’s most exciting new artists, ready to carry the classic rhythms of Rio into the future. Performing with her full band from Rio, Mart’nália is samba. Her CD’s have been produced by legends and icons like Maria Bethania, Caetano Veloso and Celso Fonseca. Chico Buarque sings duets with the young artist. And everyone in Brazil, from lovers of classic styles to hipster cariocas, has fallen in love with the music of Mart’nalia.

Mart’nália: born to the samba tradition

As a child, she would follow her father to the samba sessions of Vila Isabel. Soon she was dancing samba, and eager to be a full-fledged sambista, she learned to play guitar, tambourine, and sing.  1985, she started recording a few things “just for fun”, but her talent was immediately recognized, and her first album was released, “Mart’nália (3M//music manager, Ruy Quaresma). In 1995, her second album was released: “Minha Cara” (ZFM//music manager, Ivan Machado). In 2002 she released the acclaimed “Pé do Meu Samba” (Natasha Records), which she considered her “real thing.” Produced by Celso Fonseca and directed by Caetano Veloso, the CD was highly praised by the media and led to a long run of live performances, which were recorded on DVD. Next came “Mart’nália ao Vivo” in 2004 (Natasha Records). This time, the singer took personal charge of the music production and the show was directed by Marcia Alvarez, also in charge of the screenplay. This live album was recorded at Olimpo/Rio de Janeiro, and had as special guests: Caetano Veloso, Celso Fonseca, Djavan, Martinho da Vila, Moska and Zélia Duncan.

Her most recent recording, “Menino do Rio,” was released in 2006 on the Quitanda label, owned by diva Maria Bethânia who also performed on the album, contributed with art direction, and “her” conductor Jaime Alem, for the music direction.secondaryphotoforwebsite This diversified album includes the song “Cabide,” a gift from singer/composer Ana Carolina – chosen as the sound track for a popular “novella” (a type of Brazilian soap opera) directed by Gilberto Braga.

During her entire career, Mart’nália has been a sought-after and active performer and important presence in the Brazilian music scene, in shows throughout Brazil and Europe.

Shows & reviews

Since 2002, when “Pé no Samba” as a live show was still a project, Mart’nália decided she would always invite a friend to share the performance. The idea was to re-create the open, relaxed atmosphere of the rodas de samba. The best moment, she thought, would be right after the “voice and guitar”: the guest would perform his songs, maybe a different version of her songs, and they could sing in duet. It worked, and the stage of Pé no Samba received artists such as Alcione, Beth Carvalho, Caetano Veloso, Celso Fonseca, Fernanda Abreu, Geraldo Azevedo, Ivan Lins, Jussara Silveira, Lenine, Luiz Melodia, Martinho da Vila, Moska, Pedro Luís, Sandra de Sá, Zélia Duncan, Zé Renato and Toni Garrido. What happened? Every performance became unique – creative samba, always on the move.

In November, she accepted an invitation from Caetano Veloso and took part in the Projeto Pão Music, held at the park Ibirapuera, São Paulo. In Rio de Janeiro, she sang at the Canecão, together with her father, Martinho da Vila. These shows were part of the “Projeto Música Popular Brasileira”. From there she went on, doing a number of concerts in Portugal. Many more shows followed.

Some highlights of the last few years:

• Mart’nália had two show seasons: one every week at the Centro Cultural Carioca (on Wednesdays), and one every Sunday at Melt.
• She took part in “Show da Mangueira”, singing with Djavan at the Canecão and with Emílio Santiago at Tom Brasil, in São Paulo.
• By February, the DVD “Mart’nália ao Vivo” was out, celebrated with a party at Modern Sound, a cult record store in Rio.
• May 1st; she performed at “Encontros Tim”. Held in Copacabana beach, the show also brought Marcelo D2, Marisa Monte and Paulinho da Viola.
• May 13 celebrates the Brazilian freedom from slavery, and a beautiful event took place at the headquarters of Escola de Samba de Vila Isabel. Also invited were Sandra de Sá and Zélia Duncan.
• June: Mart’nália’s European Tour started in Italy, with the 15th Latin American Festival, in Milano. Next, she went to the cities of Porto and Lisboa – Portugal – and from there she landed at Espaço Brasil/França, in Paris. To round up the Tour, her last show took place in Roma.
• November: the 5th CD was recorded, with art direction of Maria Bethânia and music direction of Jaime Alem.

February: Release of “Menino do Rio.” Eclectic in style, the CD shows unique interpretations of :
• “Menino do Rio”, a classic from Caetano Veloso.
• “Estácio Holly Estácio”, a classic from Luiz Melodia.
• “Cabide”, from Ana Carolina (became a hit song).
• “A Origem da Felicidade”, a partido alto (tradicional samba), with Celso Fonseca, drums and percussion of Bateria da Vila Isabel.
• “São Sebastião” has the swing of Totonho Villeroy and the voice of Maria Bethânia.
• “Soneto do teu corpo”, with successful pop music partners Moska and Leoni.
• “Só Deus é quem sabe”, a romantic song from Guilherme Arantes.
• “Nas águas de Amaralina”, by Nelson Rufino and Martinho da Vila.
• “Casa da minha comadre”, by Roque Ferreira and Jorge Agrião.
• “Boto meu povo na rua” by Arlindo Cruz, Acyr Marques and Ronaldinho
• “Essa mania” (with Paulinho Moska)

Martn’ália’s father, the great samba lengend, Martinho da Vila writes:

“The name “Mart’nália” was an invention, a mixture of my own name, Martinho, and that of her late mother Anália. What a singer she is! Her voice is sweet, dark, and swinging, with a distinct and unique timbre. She also dances, plays guitar and almost every Brazilian percussion instrument. God bless you, Mart’nália!”

Ellen Azorin, President
Cantaloupe Music Productions, Inc.
Phone: 212.724.2400

Web sites and more music samples: [site is in English] [official web site, in Portuguese]

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