Festival Internacional JAZZMADRID
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Mayra Andrade

Mayra Andrade

Villanos del Jazz In collaboration with Villanos del Jazz

U 19 Nov
Fernán Gómez. Centro Cultural de la Villa
Sala Guirau · 20.00 h · How to get there
  • Reduced mobility
  • Magnetic loop

This vocalist has become a veritable prima donna of Cape Verdean popular music. She has no one to blame but herself: after several years of searching and adapting its forms to the urban and traditional music of Cape Verde, hers is the wonderful voice that most resonates in the minds of record producers. Four years ago, Mayra performed at the La Mar de Músicas Festival in Cartagena, and she is now returning with no other backing than the memory of the audience and the occasional routine visit. Her appearance in our city is included in the Not Just Jazz section through which JAZZMADRID occasionally offers a space to artists who are not exactly jazz players.

Everything was relatively simple for Mayra Andrade, who was born in Cuba but grew up in Cape Verde, Senegal, Angola and various European countries. She has often said that the first song she ever sang was O Leâozinho, by Caetano Veloso, a musician she always cites as one of her greatest influences. The daughter of a Cape Verdean diplomat, her family’s constant travelling allowed Mayra to take singing lessons in Paris as a teenager. While she was studying, it all happened for her. She met the composer Orlando Pantera and began a collaboration with him that allowed her to embark on a tour of several Portuguese-speaking cities, including Lisbon and Praia and Mindelo in Cape Verde.

In 2011, when she was 26, she collaborated with the Trio Mocotó on a song called Berimbau, which was released on one of the Red Hot + Rio collections. These albums, as many people know, had a huge popular impact throughout the world due to their altruistic character – they were made to help in the fight against AIDS and social exclusion. Thanks to this recording, a huge audience was able to discover the full range of sensual vocal nuances that make Mayra Andrade’s work truly unique.

Since then, International collaborations have followed one after the other in the albums she has released, all characterised by the powerful sonic arrangement of various meaty Cape Verdean musical styles, all wrapped up in the modern sound of Africa (what some people call Afrobeat). A perfect example of all this was her 2019 album Manga, produced by two luminaries of modern African music: Senegal’s Akatché and Ivory Coast’s 2B.

For her recording sessions and concerts, Mayra Andrade can count on an obedient and efficient band that shapes the rhythmic flow of the songs so that her rich and clear voice can flow over and through them without difficulty.

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