Wednesday, 02 October 2019 18:01

A Brazilian That Looks To The World: Everton Firmeza

Written by Geisa Fernandes

(GF) How did your relationship with music start?

(EF) Since an early age, I´ve listened and enjoyed music. My father, an amateur musician himself, played tambourine and always had a lot of fun. I associate music with joy and positive vibes this day. At 13 I started to learn guitar and electric bass. I decided to pursue my career as a musician, when I was around 15. I even started a technical degree, but soon realized that was not what I wanted for me.

(GF) What are your main musical references?

(EF) I simply have to mention firstly the Brazilian music. Its tradition is so rich and strong that provides me a lot of material to deal with, so I am constantly researching on current and old composers and performers. I admire Hermeto Pascoal, Hamilton de Hollanda, Yamandú Costa, Tom Jobim, Pipoquinha, among many others. I was also got in touch with jazz and experimental music during my studies. In the jazz field, I admire the Bill Evans's Trio and the brilliant double bass player Scott LaFaro and John Coltrane's Quartet. In experimental music, I like Webern and Steve Reich very much. Frank Zappa is also a great reference!


(GF) What is it like working with a Brazilian tradition genre, such as Choro, in Europe?

(EF) I think it's really cool to be able to work with Choro and Brazilian Music here. I live since 2015 in Brussels, a very interesting, multicultural city. Here I was able to meet many musicians, also Brazilians, who are very interested and talented, and who play Brazilian music very well. People here are also very interested in our music and in our culture in general and so I could build an engaged fan base. Learning French and Dutch help me a lot, too.


(GF) Tell us about your latest album, ‘Burocrático’ (Bureaucratic)

(EF) Burocrático is the third album of the Everton Firmeza Trio. I started it in 2014, when I was still living in Belo Horizonte, because I wanted to have a project of mine, in which I would take the lead and make all the important decisions. Usually as a bass player I work on other musicians' projects, and I'm always subject to their decisions. I then invited Fred Selva, vibraphonist, and Felipe Bastos, drummer and percussionist, to record the album ‘Firmeza!’ and promote it in some gigs in the city. Later, when I came to Brussels in 2015, I invited Italian pianist Piergiorgio Pirro and drummer Josaphat Hounnou from Benin, a West African country that has many cultural similarities with Brazil to continue the project. Piergiorgio studied classical music, jazz and experimental music, while Josaphat thoroughly studied Benin and African rhythms, but also jazz and pop music. Since then we have done several presentations and recorded two albums: Younger ‘Brother’ (2018) and ‘Burocrático’ (2019), which has been recorded in a single day.

Written by Geisa Fernandes - Brasil / Rio de Janeiro

The repertoire of this jazz singer and awarded songwriter from Rio de Janeiro reveals influences of Brazilian popular music, the French chanson and Latin American rhythms, but most of all, Geisa Fernandes is a jazz singer. Billie Holiday aficionada (back in college folks used to call her "Lady Doc"), this PhD holder and Comics researcher was a former vocalist of several bands in São Paulo. 

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