Nascimento at Lincoln Center

Four-time Grammy Award winner and international superstar, Milton Nascimento, is a brilliant songwriter, guitarist and singer from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Well known within the Portuguese community, Milton is also world renowned.

On Friday, June 24 at 7:00 p.m., American audiences will get an opportunity to hear Nascimento’s spirited music within Jazz at Lincoln Center (Broadway at 60th Street, New York, N.Y., Ground Floor) when he appears at Frederick P. Rose Hall.

The event, co-sponsored by The Stahl Organization and produced by Jazz Forum Arts Executive Director, Mark Morganelli, will regale the audience with a blend of Brazilian, African folk, European classical, Brazilian bossa nova and the rock sound of the Beatles.

Many of Nascimento’s American fans may remember “Native Dancer,” a recording Nascimento made with Wayne Shorter in 1974. This led to further collaborations with American musicians such as George Duke, Quincy Jones, Cat Stevens and Paul Simon. The Brazilian superstar has featured on his recordings musical artists like James Taylor, Herbie Hancock, Pat Metheny, Ron Carter and Peter Gabriel.

In the early stages of his career, Nascimento played in two samba groups: Evolussamba and Sambacana. His composition “Canção do Sal” led to his first television appearance. Famous for his falsetto and tonal range, Milton popularized songs like “Maria, Maria,” “Canção da América,” “Travessia,” “Bailes da Vida,” and “Coração de Estudante.” A current release was “Milton Nascimento and the Belmondo Brothers Recorded Live at Cite de la Musique in Paris, France.” He also recorded “Bossa Nova One” with Trio Jobim, and is presently touring throughout Brazil with his current recording “E A Gente Sonhando.”

“It is always nice to be back in New York and the United States. The U.S. is the first country I recorded in outside of Brazil. It is where I have many friends so I am very excited to be back. I am preparing a lot of the classics, plus a couple of new things for the Rose Hall show,” stated the talented artist.

“Also while I am in the States, I am slated to play the Jazz Alley in Seattle on June 28 and 29 and the Stanford Jazz Workshop in San Francisco on June 30 and July 1. I will also appear at the Montreal Jazz Festival in Canada” continued Nascimento.

Jobim fans may recognize Nascimento’s contribution to bossa nova. “Like most things that have happened with me, my association with Jobim came about very naturally. Tom Jobim was inaugurated at a new theater in Rio called Teatro. I was invited to play with Paulo and Daniel Jobim; Tom Jobims son and grandson. That concert was so nice and it felt so great for us to play Tom Jobims repertoire, we decided to record an album,” remarked Milton who enjoys diving in his leisure time.

Nascimento’s mother Maria do Carmo Nascimento (who was employed as a maid), died when he was 18 months old. He was adopted by his mother’s former employers Josino Brito Campos, who ran a radio station where Nascimento later performed as a DJ. Campos was also a bank employee, mathematics teacher and electronic technician. His adoptive mother, Lília Silva Campos, was a music teacher and choir singer.

Milton Nascimento won a Grammy for Best World Music Album in 1997 for Nascimento and a Latin Grammy for Best Contemporary Pop Album in 2000 for Crooner at the First Annual Latin Grammy Awards. He also won consecutive Latin Grammys in 2003 and 2004 for Best Brazilian Song (Portuguese Language) as songwriter for “Tristesse” and “A Festa” respectively.

“It is always nice to be remembered and recognized by one’s peers. It feels good to be awarded, especially when it is a Grammy,” stated the award winner modestly.

Milton talked about his efforts to pass down his music to younger people and his willingness to help young musicians. “I am always in touch with the younger generation. I try to pass to them good feelings through my music. On my latest album for instance, I recorded with very young musicians. What was especially rewarding was that some of these young people came from my hometown in southern Minas Gerais,” commented Nascimento.