Captivating Fado

New York, USA – Portuguese vocalist
, whose spellbinding version of
her land’s captivating fado style has made her a star in Europe, brings her
persuasive magic to North American audiences with the release of her
debut album Guarda-me a vida na mao (Keep my Life in your Hand) released
on World Village/Harmonia Mundi USA.The 25-year old singer has become a leading exponent of this poetic, deeply
expressive idiom which personifies the Portuguese psyche as it explores such
universal themes as lost love, separation, and longing. As Ana explains, “It’s
very special because it’s all about emotions and feelings. It needs no

Improvising is an under-appreciated part of the fado tradition. One
technique, which Ana uses to great effect on the song “Lavava no rio lavava” (I
Went to the River to Wash), is what the Portuguese term vocalizes-the expression
of words and effects through use of vocal trills.

A key track from her album exquisitely sums up the magnetic pull fado
has exerted on Ana. “Sou do fado, sou fadista” (I Belong to Fado, I Am a Fadista)
by her mentor and primary collaborator, guitarist Jorge Femando, eloquently
explains Ana’s total surrender to the style: “I know my soul has surrendered,
taken my voice in hand, twisted in my chest and shown it to the world. And I
have closed my eyes in a wistful longing to sing, to sing. And a voice sings to
me softly, and a voice enchants me softly, I belong to fado, I belong to fado, I
am a fadista

Today, even as the U.S. release of Guarda-me a vida na mao/Keep
My Life in your Hand and a Carnegie Hall solo debut scheduled for March 12
trumpet her international success, Ana Moura still thinks of how and where it
all began, and of the importance of keeping those vital ties alive. “Before,” she muses, “I used to sing in the fado house every day. Today, because of my
concert schedule and travel, it’s impossible. But, when time permits, I like to
return. Sometimes I feel that I must go there. I need that


Guarda-Me a Vida Na Mao

Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites and Angel produced several specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music and electronic music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World, Lektronic Soundscapes, and Mindchild Records. Angel is currently based in Durham, North Carolina.