@ Pigeon Island, St. Lucia Jazz Festival
10 May 2007
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The beauty and charm of Pigeon Island during the day, or night, never fails to excite the senses. With the Atlantic Ocean on one side, the Caribbean Sea on the other, delicately lit palm trees gently kissing the sky, combined with the anticipation of a tremendous musical experience is surely enough to warm the coolest hearts.
Tania Maria - biography
Internationally renowned for her exhilarating vocals and keyboard artistry Tania Maria's music is a unique combination of jazz, funk and the popular music of her native Brazil. She has created an eclectic fusion that is more exciting than pure jazz and appeals to a great variety of audiences around the world.
Tania Maria was born in Brazil and it was there, at the tender age of 7, that she began her musical training, playing the piano. An early interest in her country's popular music developed into a fascination for jazz and she first became a leader at the age of 13, performing with her own Brazilian ensemble. Surrounded by music Maria couldn't help but absorb the sounds around her, the rhythms and melodies of samba, jazz, popular music, blues and Brazilian chorinho.
Early influences such as Oscar Peterson, Bill Evans, Sarah Vaughan, Antonio Carlos Jobim, and Milton Nascimento, helped to create the syntheses of sounds that have become synonymous with the individual style of Tania Maria. Her arrangements began to fuse Brazilian rhythms and Caribbean salsa with the more improvised expression that is associated with jazz.
Maria's debut album “Olha Quem Chega” was released in Brazil in 1971, but it was a move to France in the late 1970s that exploded her onto the international scene, bringing her to the attention of Concord Records. A move to New York followed and in 1983 she released the album “Come With Me”, the title track of which became a huge international smash hit.
In the 1990s Maria entered a particularly productive period in her career, and with Brazilian music enjoying an international resurgence her unique sound was again very much the sound of the moment. Maria described her album “Viva Brazil” (released August 2000) as a dream come true, she explains:
“The idea for Viva Brazil was a dream that came to life. It's a beautiful album that brings me straight to my roots, to my childhood, to the hot and sweaty rhythms that caress my soul and which takes me back to Brazilian musicians who helped me to spread this musical fragrance. I would say that this album is a perfume composed from magical essences.”
Tania Maria is now settled again in France and continues to tour and record extensively, wowing club and festival audiences wherever she appears.
Tania Maria - piano / keyboard & vocals
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