Luiz Eça

Luiz Eca, born Luis Mainzi da Cunha Eca, was an important asset to Brazilian music especially the bossa-nova movement. He was a highly skilled and classically trained pianist and could switch between hard and swinging to quiet, introspective music. His original musical vocabulary combined Brazilian rhythmic tradition with erudite advanced harmonys. He was strongly influenced jazz and could perform in any style of any great jazz pianist. However, this was only for friends. His professional voice is still very distinctive. At five years old, he began learning classical piano. He was already captivated by jazz as a teenager and frequented Cantina de Cesar, the bar run by Cesar de Alencar. There, Johnny Alf was setting new standards and inspiring all of the bossa Nova generation. In 1953, Eca was already playing at Plaza nightclub, which was the center of the new bossa nova movement. In 1958, Eca moved to Vienna, Austria to pursue classical music studies after he was awarded a scholarship by the Brazilian government. He returned to Brazil and joined the Maysa-backed group, which toured with him. They also had Luis Carlos Vinhas, violonista Roberto Menescal, and supported singer Leny Anderson. He joined the group that was the modern champions of Brazilian music, known as the bossa Nova movement. Eca’s extraordinary piano playing and arranging skills were a major inspiration for the movement. In their first period of popularity, bossa nova looked for new expression venues. Eca was there every time with his piano. He formed the Tamba Trio in 1962. It is an integral part of the Brazilian music panel. The Tamba Trio, which rejected the role of rhythmic section as a backing band at that time, would inspire many new trios to explore musical expression and artistic talent. The Trio was often composed of three-part vocal harmony, backed by strong instrumental support. He invited drummer Helcio Milito, also a singer and percussionist, and bassist Otavio Bailly, soon replaced by Bebeto Castilho, also a flutist/saxophonist/singer, and on March 19, 1962, the Tamba Trio opened with its definitive formation at Bottle’s nightclub at the Beco das Garrafas (Rio’s 52nd Street). They toured the U.S., Argentina, and continued their extensive international discography. After a long time in the U.S., Eca was back and joined the Sagrada Familia. He then went to Mexico. Eca was a prolific recording artist in Brazil. He recorded with backing singers, performed with Tamba Trio and solo. Eca was always active and played every night in Rio’s top nightclubs. His remarkable recordings include O Prestigio de Luis Eca (Philips), Tamba Trio(BMG), Tamba Trio/Philips), We and the Sea, (with the trio-turned quartet Tamba 4 (A

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