The Guitar Works of Garoto

The Guitar Works of Garoto
Maker/Manufacturer: BELLINATI, PAULO



PAULO BELLINATI'S COMMENTS (from the liner notes)

When I played some of Garoto’s compositions for the first time, I discovered that an important chapter of Brazilian folk music had been neglected—a period that preceded the beginning of bossa nova in the ’60s, a rich and original repertoire yet to be discovered, with excellent harmonic and technical levels that, like Villa-Lobos’ masterpieces, should be a part of Brazilian guitar literature. I became determined to resurrect Garoto’s guitar works.

Most of the researched repertoire was provided by a close friend of the composer, professor Ronoel Simões, who has some rare manuscripts (Nosso Chôro, Enigma, Naqueles Velhos Tempos, and Inspiração) and a unique collection of records and tapes of Garoto playing several unpublished tunes. These home recordings were made especially for Mr. Simões in 1950. Some other musicians who had close contacts with Garoto gave me a few manuscripts: A Caminho dos Estados Unidos (professor Milton Nunes), Mazurka No. 3 (Aymoré), and Doce Lembrança (Jamil Jorge Neder).

Another missing link was supplied by Mr. Lauro Paes de Andrade, a Brazilian music collector who generously offered me two very old homemade tapes (1952-1953) containing several precious Garoto performances. The first step was listening to all the recordings again and again until I could play the pieces exactly as Garoto did. Only then was I able to transcribe and notate the solos with accuracy.

The pieces, as you hear them on this recording, are transcriptions from recordings and a few manuscripts, transcriptions only from manuscripts, and arrangements totally re-harmonized and developed from uncompleted texts and/or recordings.

LAURINDO ALMEIDA'S COMMENTS (from the liner notes)

On May 30th, 1955, in Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, Garoto died at the age of 39 from heart failure. The music world had lost a genuine star!

Annibal Augusto Sardinha (Garoto) was born in 1915, in São Paulo, Brazil. His first instrument was the banjo, which was later substituted by the 4-string tenor guitar, tuned in intervals of fifths. Garoto (his nickname) was still very young when he fell in love with the acoustic steel string guitar around 1933, before the nylon string era. He loved playing all the different plucked instruments, however, after studying music, composition became his main love. He most certainly deserves a place among the aces of Brazilian popular music: Ernesto Nazareth, Chiquinha Gonzaga, and Anacleto Medeiros, just to name a few. All of these were chôristas (people who play and compose chôros), as was Garoto, although he used far more advanced harmonies in his music.

Daily activities found Garoto with his fellow happy and carefree bohemian musicians of São Paulo, forming groups known as chôrôes (musicians who play chôros). The Chôro was preferred by the young popular musicians mainly because they had fun improvising in the question-and-answer part that happens in the slow, melodic sequences. Among the varied forms of Brazilian popular music, the chôro is perhaps the most romantic and descriptive. The pieces in 3/4 time are called valsa-chôro, and those dominated by lively rhythms chôrinho (a lovely diminutive for chôro).

In 1933, Garoto accepted an invitation to work with Carmen Miranda and the group Bando da Lua, performing with her in several cities in the United States and later taking part in the Broadway Revue Streets of Paris and the Fox film Down Argentine Way.

In this album of chôros, Garoto’s music paints his country, Brazil, into a beautiful aquarelle of colors, sounds, and styles. The three basic powers that make up Brazilian music—the Indigena (Indian), African, and European—are thematically very evident.

I was delighted to be asked to write something for this album about Garoto, for I knew him well, played with him, and loved him in my early days in Brazil. I met him first when I was 13 years old in a hospital as a result of the civil war in São Paulo (he had come to play for the patients). Several years later we met again in Rio de Janeiro while playing at Radio Mayrink Veiga. We became close friends and did one record together for RCA Victor of Brazil. Garoto was a wonderful person and I am sure everyone who knew him misses him as I do.

Additional Information

Additional Information

Maker / Manufacturer BELLINATI, PAULO
Availability N/A
Track 1 Duas Contas
Track 2 Inspiracao
Track 3 Lamentos do Morro
Track 4 Um Rosto de Mulher
Track 5 Sinal dos Tempos
Track 6 Debussyana
Track 7 A Caminho dos Estados Unidos
Track 8 Mazurka No. 3
Track 9 Carioquinha
Track 10 Voltarei
Track 11 Desvairada
Track 12 Improviso
Track 13 Tristezas de um Violao
Track 14 Meditacao
Track 15 Naqueles Velhos Tempos
Track 16 Gracioso
Track 17 Vivo Sonhando
Track 18 Enigma
Track 19 Esperanca
Track 20 Nosso Choro
Track 21 Choro Triste No. 2
Track 22 Doce Lembranca
Track 23 Jorge do Fusa
Track 24 Gente Humilde


“Paulo Bellinati does a superb job of resurrecting and interpreting the work of the brilliant Brazilian composer/guitarist, Garoto, my dear friend by whom I was greatly influenced. This monumental recording by Paulo brings back wonderful memories, and clearly shows the musical genius of Garoto who was so far ahead of his time.” — Luiz Bonfá

“Paulo Bellinati plays Garoto’s lovely music with such fidelity that one who knew Garoto would almost swear Garoto himself was playing. Possessing a clean and decisive technique, Bellinati is one of the best guitarists of the young generation. This album is a winner—not only for those who love Brazilian music but also for those who simply love the beautiful sound of a well-played guitar. Congratulations Paulo!” — Laurindo Almeida

“It is a joy listening to this beautifully produced recording, perpetuating a unique repertoire created by the genius of Garoto and revived through the artistry and labor of the talented Paulo Bellinati. Paulo projects a clean, sensitive tone and his interpretations reflect the best of the Brazilian tradition—romanticism, intimacy and rhythmic sensuality. These music folios and recording, faithful to Garoto’s original manuscripts and recordings, are most impressive.” — Carlos Barbosa-Lima

“Paulo Bellinati does the next best thing to resurrecting Brazil’s legendary Garoto. With masterful playing and attention to detail, Bellinati breathes life into these innovative pieces, which have been dormant for so long.” — Jim Ferguson, Guitar Player Magazine

“One of Brazil’s greatest contemporary guitarists, Paulo Bellinati completes a mission of historic significance with the release of this CD, a collection of his more than accurate transcriptions of Garoto’s works. Although gems of a composer much ahead of his time—a pioneer of the bossa nova style due to his harmonic complexities and rhythmic innovations—the pieces never seemed so fresh as through Bellinati’s hands. Never letting his impeccable technique overshadow the captivating spontaneity of his playing, he creates a true masterpiece.” — Arnaldo de Souteiro, Tribuna da Imprensa - Rio de Janeiro

“Garoto’s legacy is one of great importance, not only in the world of Brazilian music but also in the literature of the guitar. Guitar Solo Publications gives us a triple treat: first by recording the guitar works of Garoto; second by having Paulo Bellinati, the arranger and transcriber of the pieces, as the soloist who gives a performance of rare delicacy; and third by publishing the printed editions of all the material contained in the album. This is truly a treasure of a collection. Thanks Dean Kamei.” — Oscar Castro Neves

“Every now and then a special recording makes its way to a reviewer’s desk. It’s not just another performance of standard repertoire, not a reissue of well-loved (or hated) material, and not a brave attempt to push the polemics of the moribund avant-garde back into some newly carved little niche. Paulo Bellinati’s beautiful homage to the guitar works of Brazilian guitarist/composer Garoto is just such a disc. In terms of technique, commitment, sympathy, and musicianship, Bellinati’s recital is an impressive achievement, and the GSP engineers have captured an exemplary guitar sound.” — Richard Perry, CD Review (5 star review)

“As an avid aficionado of Brazilian guitar music, I consider this recording to be of monumental significance. Mr. Paulo Bellinati and GSP, muito obrigado!” — Raul Jose, Arizona Classical Guitar Society

“I reserve the four-star designation for recordings that are magnificent accomplishments as well as for some that are just so enjoyable you want to listen to them all day. The latter is the case with Brazilian classical guitarist Paulo Bellinati.” — Nancy R. Ping-Robbins, The News & Observer, Raleigh, NC. (4 star review)

“…true resurrection. …an essential contribution to the literature of South American guitar.” — Les Cahiers de la Guitare


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