Brazilian singer, guitarist, composer, drummer, and percussionist, Vinicius Cantuaria is an internationally-known musician in the worlds of bossa nova and jazz.
Born in Manaus, Amazonas, he grew up in Rio de Janeiro, where he was a pioneer of neo-Brazilian music.
After six successful records, including 1996’s powerful “Sol na Cara,” Cantuaria moved to New York in the mid-’90s.
He then became one of the most important downtown New York figures, blending the rich history of Brazilian music with jazz, avant-garde and pop.
Although he is active in the New York City jazz scene, Cantuaria will be making his first appearance on Long Island at Landmark on Main on Saturday, March 25 at 8 p.m., where he will be performing the music of legendary Brazilian composer Antonio Carlos.
His current concert program is drawn from his recent recording, Vinicius Canta Antonio Carlos Jobim (Sunnyside, 2015).
The music of Brazil has left a treasure trove of unparalleled compositional gems, none as beloved as the catalog of Jobim.”
A genius in utilizing the cool of jazz, the seductiveness of Brazil and the words of a poet, Jobim has left a wake that has rocked the musical world with the spawning of the bossa nova movement.
All contemporary Brazilian musicians are indebted to Jobim so it is only natural that one of the most important Brazilian voices of the past two decades perform a tribute.
On Vinicius Canta Antonio Carlos Jobim, Cantuaria performs the work of Tom Jobim solo and with the help of some truly amazing co-conspirators, including guitarist Bill Frisell and pianist and composer Ryuichi Sakamoto.
His compositions “Lua e Estrela” and “So Voce” are MPB (Musica Popular Brasileira) classics that sold over 3 million copies each in the 1980s and 90s.
Despite this success, Cantuaria left the Brazilian pop scene in 1994 and moved to Brooklyn in an effort to redefine the art form of bossa nova, which he so desperately loves.
The results are a captivating nova bossa nova, which is deeply influenced by his music heroes, Miles Davis, Chet Baker, Bill Evans and Antonio Carlos Jobim.
In New York, he became a sought-after percussionist, guitarist, singer and muse by bold-faced names from jazz and the avant-garde to pop.
Many of them — from David Byrne to Jesse Harris, Melody Gardot to Norah Jones, and Caetano Veloso to Arto Lindsay — have, in turn, been eager to guest-star on Cantuaria’s own releases.
Best known among his extra-curricular efforts are his collaborations with Frisell in a duo and concert program that resulted in the recording, Lagrimas Mexicanas (Naïve, 2011), and as a member of the Grammy-nominated jazz-meets-world music quartet “The Intercontinentals”.
Cantuaria’s almost instantaneous cult star status in New York City was no mere lucky break.
He arrived with just the right resume at a time when the sounds of Brazil past and present were increasingly attracting curious musicians and audiences.
In New York, he released nine internationally acclaimed studio albums, including “Sol Na Cara: (Gramavision, 1996), “Tucuma” (Verve, 1999), “Vinicius” (Sony, 2002), “Horse & Fish” (Rykodisc, 2004), “Silva: (Rykodisc, 2005), “Cymbals” (Naïve, 2007), “Samba Carioca” (Naïve, 2010), “Lagrimas Mexicanas” (Naïve, 2011), and “Indio De Apartamento” (Naïve, 2013).
In 2014, he returned to live in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, where he recorded Vinicius Canta Antonio Carlos Jobim.
In 2017, Cantuaria will release a project dedicated to the rivers of the Amazon, entitled “Sounds of the Rivers”.
With critically acclaimed concert performances at some of the most prestigious festivals and concert halls including the North Sea Jazz Festival in Holland, Jazz A Vienne in France, the Blue Note in Tokyo, the Vancouver Jazz Festival in Canada, the Blue Note in New York, the SF Jazz Center in San Francisco, the Sydney Opera House in Australia, and the Barbican and Queen Elizabeth Hall in London, Cantuaria continues to wow audiences throughout the world.