Music

Egberto Gismonti

Born 5 December 1947.
Egberto Gismonti

Biography

Egberto Amin Gismonti (born December 5, 1947 in Carmo, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) is a Brazilian composer, guitarist and pianist.

He was influenced by Heitor Villa-Lobos, his works reflecting the musical diversity of Brazil. From the Amazon Indians' batuque to the Carioca samba and choro, through the Northeastern frevo, baião, and forró, Gismonti captures the true essence of the Brazilian soul in a way that is primitive, yet sophisticated, and reflects it through his personal vision, elaborated by years of classic training and literacy in a wealth of musical languages in which jazz plays a significant role.

Coming from a musical family, in which his grandfather and his uncle Edgar were bandleaders, he started to take piano and musical theory classes at five. At that time, he also started to learn the flute and the clarinet, eventually taking up the acoustic guitar in his teens. Following the piano classical tradition because of his father, he embraced the guitar to please his Italian mother, who was very fond of serenatas. Trying to transpose the piano's polyphonic quality for the guitar, he ended several years later with three custom-made instruments (ten-, 12-, and 14-stringed) and a personally developed two-hand technique. At eight, he started to study piano with Brazilian masters Jacques Klein and Aurélio Silveira for a 15-year apprenticeship.

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BBC Reviews

  1. Review of Selected Recordings

    Selected Recordings 2004

    Reviewed by Martin Longley
    Brazilian guitarist/pianist Gismonit selects the best from his back catalogue; from...
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