Tag Archives: forró

Artist Profiles: Rob Curto’s Forro For All

Rob Curto

Forró For All is a band dedicated to the sound of Northeastern Brazil’s traditional ‘forró p’ de serra’ performed with a sensibility born of New York City’s diverse and dynamic musical culture.

Forró For All’s founder accordionist Rob Curto mixes elements of jazz with a language and feel that is distinctly Brazilian. Curto’s virtuosic accordion playing and the band’s wide-ranging musical influences bring a fresh perspective to forró with improvisation, original compositions and rhythmic and harmonic innovations. Rob has spent years intimately involved with the music and culture of the Brazilian Northeast working as a musician in Brazil and has developed a reputation there as an extremely skillful and artistic forró accordionist.

He studied with great accordionists from Pernambuco, Brazil such as Arlindo dos Oito Baixos, Camario and Silveirinha and with guitarist Alencar 7-Cordas from Paraiba. Rob keeps as his main source the work of Dominguinhos (with whom he has performed) Sivuca, Oswaldinho, Hermeto Pascoal and of course the great innovator of forró Luiz Gonzaga.

In addition to his work with Forró For All, Rob Curto tours and records with world music artists such as Mexican singer Lila Downs and klezmer artist David Krakauer and also recorded with Brazilian percussionist Cyro Baptista.

Discography:

Forró For All

Share

Forró in the Dark Discusses New Album Sandcastle

Forró in the Dark – Photo by Vladimir Radojicic

 

New York city-based band Forró in the Dark has a new album titled, Sandcastle (Nacional Records), its first release in 8 years. The band was formed in 2002 features Brazilian musicians based in the United States. Forró in the Dark members include Mauro Refosco on zabumba, percussion; Guilherme Monteiro on guitar; and Jorge Continentino on pífanos, flutes, and saxophones.

 

Forró in the Dark – Sandcastle

 

Forró in the Dark’s music is characterized by the forró rhythm of Brazil that is combined with rock, jazz, country and other genres. Earlier recordings include Bonfires of Sao Joao (2006), Light A Candle (2009) and Plays Zorn (Tzadik, 2015).

We talked to guitarist Guilherme Monteiro about Sandcastle.

This is your first album in 8 years, how has the band evolved musically during this time?

Well, we’ve done a lot of touring after the release of “Light a Candle”, so we had the opportunity of developing that music in big stages around the world, which is pretty different from the process we had before of testing out our new material at Nublu, which is a small club we used to play in New York. Also, we grew a lot individually, playing in different musical situations as side man or with our own projects, so when we get together to play with Forró In The Dark these days it has less of a testosterone driven energy and a much more musical vibe. We play with more dynamics and nuances than we used to.

Are there lineup changes?

Yes, Davi, who was a percussionist in the band, left the band a few years ago, so that was important for us to forge the sound of the new record. Me, Mauro and Jorge have a more similar sense of aesthetics and way of approaching the music.

 

Forró in the Dark – Photo by Vladimir Radojicic

 

What languages are you using in your new album Sandcastle?

Portuguese and English.

Eight years is a long time in-between albums. What have you been up to during this time?

We toured quite a lot in Europe and the States. Played some important festivals, like Bonnaroo, did extensive tours with Gogol Bordello. At some point we all had individual projects going for each individual member. Mauro was out playing with David Byrne, Atoms for Peace and the Red Hot Chilli Peppers; Jorge with Bebel Gilberto; and I’ve been touring with Gal Costa, who is a 72 year old singer, a sort of a living legend in Brazil.

Forró is still not a well-known genre outside Brazil. Are you making any inroads in the American market?

We think of ourselves of a band that honors the Forró genre but we don’t feel obliged to make inroads for it. We are primarily a band that makes music for people to dance, feel and think. Forró is a means to achieve that but we don’t consider ourselves “ambassadors” of the genre.

Share

Rob Curto’s Forró For All tours Midwest in June 2007

Rob Curto
Rob Curto

New York City Brazilian music group Rob Curto’s Forró For All will be touring the Midwestern United States in June 2007. They will be featured at important venues such as: The City Folk Festival in Dayton,.Ohio, Festival Latino in Columbus, Ohio, The Ark in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and the Cedar Cultural Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Rob Curto’s Forró For All is a band dedicated to the sound of Northeastern Brazil’s traditional “forró pé de serra” music, performed with a sensibility born of New York City’s diverse and dynamic musical culture. In Northeastern Brazil a forró party unites communities and generations, with couples dancing, locked in a sensual embrace, to accordion, zabumba and triangle. This collective celebration is a creative response to the difficulties of life in the Northeast and an expression of fantastic musical intelligence and wit. June is the time of year when the traditional Festas Juninas are celebrated in Brazil, especially in the Northeast and forró is played non-stop. The Festas Juninas celebrate the religious, cultural, and rural roots of Brazil.

Forró For All’s founding member, Rob Curto, is a musician who both respects and transcends idioms, mixing elements of jazz with a language and feel that is distinctly Brazilian. A native New Yorker and important member of that city’s world music and jazz scene, Rob has also spent years intimately involved with the music and culture of the Brazilian Northeast. He studied with great accordionists from Pernambuco, Brazil such as Arlindo dos Oito Baixos, Camarão and Silveirinha, and with guitarist and master of harmony Alencar 7-Cordas from Paraíba.

Rob keeps as his bible the work of Dominguinhos (with whom he has performed), Sivuca, Oswaldinho, Hermeto Pascoal and of course the great innovator of forró, Luiz Gonzaga. He has spent years working as a musician in Brazil, and developed a reputation there as an extremely skillful and artistic forró accordionist. In addition his work includes playing and collaboration with heavy-weights of world music such as Lila Downs, David Krakauer, Cyro Baptista, Frank London and Omar Faruk Tekbilek.

Rob Curto’s Forró For All’s June tour features special guest: Rio de Janeiro vocalist, Magali. An institution of Rio’s yearly carnival, Magali, has composed and sung for numerous groups, most recently with Monobloco. In the U.S. she has collaborated with artists such as: Samba New York, Hank Schroy, and Jorge Amorim.

Rob Curto’s Forró For All have been featured at venues like: 2007 Festival International de Louisiane in Lafayette, Louisiana, the Madison World Music Festival in Madison, Wisconsin, the Chicago World Music Festival and many others.

Rob Curto’s Forró For All June 2007 Tour

Saturday, June 9th- Marquette Waterfront Festival (Madison, WI)
www.marquette-neighborhood.org

Sunday, June 10th- Club Timbuktu (Milwaukee, WI)
www.clubtimbuktu.us

Wednesday, June 13th-Nighttown (Cleveland Heights, OH
www.nighttowncleveland.com

Thursday, June 14th-The Ark (Ann Arbor, MI)
www.theark.org

Friday, June 15th-Saturday, June 16th-Festival Latino (Columbus, OH)
www.festivallatino.net

Sunday, June 17th-Shadow Lounge (Pittsburgh, PA)
www.7thmovement.net

Thursday, June 21st-City of Chicago Summerdance Series (Chicago, IL)

Friday, June 22nd- Carleton College Concert Hall presented by Art Org (Northfield, MN) Opening for The Bad Plus
www.artorg.info

Sunday, June 24th- The Cedar Cultural Center (Minneapolis, MN)
www.thecedar.org

Sunday, July 1st-CityFolk Festival (Dayton, OH)
www.cityfolk.org

Share

Rob Curto’s Forró For All tours California in January 2007

Rob Curto’s - Forró For All
Rob Curto’s – Forró For All

Rob Curto’s Forró For All will be touring in California in January of 2007 performing at venues such as: the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles, and the University of California Santa Barbara.

Rob Curto’s Forró For All is a band dedicated to the sound of Northeastern Brazil’s traditional “forró pé de serra”, performed with a sensibility born of New York City’s diverse and dynamic musical culture.

Forró For All’s founder, accordionist Rob Curto, mixes elements of jazz with a language and feel that is distinctly Brazilian. Rob has spent years intimately involved with the music and culture of the Brazilian Northeast working as a musician in Brazil, and has developed a reputation there as an extremely skillful and artistic forró accordionist.

Curto studied with great accordionists from Pernambuco, Brazil such as Arlindo dos Oito Baixos, Camarão and Silveirinha, and with guitarist Alencar 7-Cordas from Paraíba. Rob keeps as his bible the work of Dominguinhos (with whom he has performed), Sivuca, Oswaldinho, Hermeto Pascoal and of course the great innovator of forró, Luiz Gonzaga. His work also includes playing and collaboration with heavy-weights of world music such as LilaDowns, David Krakauer, Cyro Baptista, Frank London and Omar Faruk Tekbilek.

Joining Curto on this 2007 tour of California are: New York percussionist Scott Kettner, Eliano Bráz from Fortaleza, Ceará, Brazil on vocals and violin; drummer Rogerio Boccato from São Paulo; and Mike LaValle, also from New York, on bass.

Forró for All’s website is:  www.forroforall.com , and they can also be found on Myspace: www.myspace.com/forroforall.

Forró For All recently toured the U.S. and Canada, being featured at prestigious venues such as the Chicago World Music Festival, the Madison World Music Festival, the Lotus Festival in Bloomington, Indiana, the Carrefour mondial de l’accordeón in Montmagny, Quebec, and at the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Performances in California January 2007:

  • Wednesday, Jan.10th Institute of the Americas (LaJolla, on the campus of UC San Diego)Rob Curto’s Forró For All performs in conjunction with an exhibition of “literatura de cordel” folk art from Northeast Brazil. Free admission. 6:30 PM-9:45 PM Contact: (858) 453-5560.
    www.iamericas.org
  • Thursday, Jan.11th 8:00 PM Skirball Cultural Center (Los Angeles, 2701 No. Sepulveda Blvd.)Part of “Compressing the World” a concert series of international accordion music. $25 General, $20 Skirball Members, and $15 Full-time students. Contact: (310) 440-4500. www.skirball.org
  • Friday, Jan.12th 8:00 PM UC Santa Barbara Multicultural Center
    Theatre (Santa Barbara, in the University Center of UC Santa Barbara)
    Tickets are $15 general admission and $5 for UCSB students Contact: (805)
    893-8411. www.mcc.sa.ucsb.edu.
  • Sunday, Jan.14th . 8:00 PM E3 Playhouse (Santa Cruz, 435 Front St.)
    Tickets: $10 advance $13 at door. Contact: 831.427.5531
    www.zookbeat.com
  • Tuesday, Jan.16th 9:00 PM Elbo Room (San Francisco, 647 Valencia Street)
    Tickets are $10. Contact the Elbo Room at: (415) 552-7788:
    www.elbo.com. Forró For All will be opening for Bay Area favorite: Nobody from Ipanema.
Share