May 20, 2024

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Guilherme Monteiro was playing and recording with some of the most respected musicians in town, such as Kenny Werner, Ron Carter and Grady Tate: Video

20.07. – Happy Birthday !!! Guilherme Monteiro born in Rio de Janeiro in the early seventies, while Brazil was still living in a dark period of it’s military dictatorship, Guilherme had an early fascination for music and improvisation.

He still remembers going after his neighbor’s music teacher and asking him to go talk to his mom, so he could start music lessons. He was a driven 7 year old back then. By the age of fifteen he was performing in jazz clubs and teaching privately in the city of Belo Horizonte, soon becoming one of the most respected musicians in that city. As a teenager in Belo Horizonte Guilherme cut his teeth on the complex harmonies and rhythms of the music from Minas Gerais, playing with Toninho Horta and Tavinho Moura. In 1995 he moved to the US to follow his american first wife.

He worked R’n’B dives and Jazz clubs in Minneapolis and Boston (where he attended Berklee) until 1999, when he was accepted to the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz Performance, a highly selective program that accepts only eight students of each instrument after auditioning musicians from all over the world. At the Institute he studied privately with Clark Terry and Jimmy Heath, also performing and teaching clinics with these living legends. Living in New York City since 2000 Guilherme had a typical NY rough start but soon enough he was playing and recording with some of the most respected musicians in town, such as Kenny Werner, Ron Carter and Grady Tate for Harry Allen’s albums, on Slide Hampton’s Jobim’s project with Claudio Roditi and Duduka da Fonseca, and also with Lee Konitz, Randy Brecker, Bernard Purdie and Johnny Alf, to mention a few. On September 2007 Guilherme and Lionel Loueke performed in a duo setting at the 3rd International Guitar Festival in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Throughout the years he has been living in New York, Guilherme has lent his distinctive sound to help shape the music of a vast array of artists.

He is featured on Kurt Elling’s release, “Night Moves” alongside Christian Mc Bride and Bob Mintzer; Eliane Elias’ record “Dreamer”, with Mark Johnson and Michael Brecker and Luciana Souza’s acclaimed release, “Duos II”, which won her a nomination for the Grammy of best Jazz vocalist of 2004. Guilherme was also one of the special guest soloists alongside Paquito De Rivera on Arturo O’Farril’s Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra’s album: “Two Acres and a Burro”, which was nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album in 2011. He holds the guitar chair on Anat Cohen’s Anzic Orchestra and on Duduka Da Fonseca’s Quintet. As a member of Lila Downs’ band, he toured for four years and recorded three albums.

The first one (One Blood) won a Latin Grammy for best Folk album. Guilherme is a core member of the band Forro in the Dark, with whom he is helping to redefine Brazilian music for this century. With Forro, he had the opportunity to collaborate with special guests David Byrne, Miho Hatori and Bebel Gilberto on the band’s 1st album, Bonfires of Sao Joao. FITD has been touring the world on it’s own and with bands like Gogol Bordello since 2007. Besides leading his own band (his first record, entitled “Air”, came out in 2009 on Brooklyn Jazz Underground Records), Guilherme is the co-leader of experimental project, Green Lotus. It is worth mentioning he was featured on Ron Carter’s release for Blue Note Records, Jazz & Bossa.

A collection of Mr. Carter’s originals and classics the legendary bassist recorded in the past. In the summer of 2009 Guilherme joined Ron Carter’s group to tour in Europe and Lebanon along RC’s long time collaborator, Stephen Scott. Known for his versatility, he recorded bass on Jesse Harris’ release “Through The Night” and guitar on Jesse’s album “Sub Rosa”, which was recorded in Rio de Janeiro. On a previous trip to Rio, Guilherme recorded on Kassin’s album: “Sonhando Devagar” and recently he has been playing on a duo concert with singer Gal Costa (who is a Brazilian national treasure) on theaters around Brazil.

Most recently he played in Anthony Wilson’s Seasons Guitar Quartet with peers Steve Cardenas and Adam Rogers and wrote the original soundtrack for the movie “Toxic Amazon”, which is gathering very good responses throughout the international media. Publications like the Huffigton Post and CNN.com have already praised the movie even before it hit the festival circuit.

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