Flavia Coelho – vocal and guitar
Paul-Alex Chonville – drums
Sebastian Lunghi – guitar
Victor Vagh – keys
After a storming headline performance at WOMAD this summer, which saw 15,000 dancing to her infectious fusion of samba, bossa-nova, and Brazilian melodies, with bit of hip hop and reggae thrown in too, we can confirm that she will be injecting a little bit of Brazilian sunshine into autumn with two intimate shows at Ronnie's this November.
Flavia Coelho is a wonderful young Brazilian singer, who draws on the traditions of samba, bossa-nova, and Brazilian melodies; chanelling the high-octane adventurous spirit of world music legend Manu Chao, she and her red-hot band work in ragga and hip-hop to create a stylish yet mischievous mix that takes the new Brazil to the world. Her recent album Bossa Muffin has made a strong impact, an uplifting fusion of styles delivered with style and a liberating, effortlessly free-wheeling confidence.
'One of the most joyful, easygoing fusion sets of the year... a rhythmic clash of Brazilian and Caribbean styles... slinky melodies and bursts of rapid-fire hip-hop' **** (The Guardian)
Flavia Coelho is a young Brazilian singer, who’s made a huge impact across Europe with her new album Bossa Muffin. As the title suggests, she draws on the traditions of the samba and the bossa nova and the melodies of the forro from north-eastern Brazil, but she and her red-hot band work in ragga and hip-hop to create a stylish yet mischievous mix that takes the new Brazil to the world.
“Flavia Coelho has created one of the most joyful, easygoing fusion sets of the year”
Robin Denselow, The Guardian
“A traveller’s diary”. These are the words used by Flavia Coelho, Rio de Janeiro’s very own, born on the wind who came to Paris in 2006, to describe her first album. The image sticks to her album, springy and true to her joyful tumultuous life, ready to take on the world and experience the beautiful encounters that came her way. Entitled Bossa Muffin, also the name for her second single (following the acclaimed “Sunshine”), it hits like a declaration of independence or a manifesto, albeit, one stripped of its dogmas and rules, a spontaneous musical movement, a virtuous celebration of cultural blending, globalisation with a human side to it.
What is Bossa Muffin? A unique mix of samba and bossa nova harmonic treasures, the hypnotic rhythm of the popular Nordestine music (forro, pagode…), the bouncing loops of reggae, the skilful braggadocio of ragamuffin, the essential pulses of African music, or even a glimpse of Catalan rumba…all of the above, seasoned with the voice of Flavia Coelho, no added effects or conceit – just a soft voice, a proud and fragile twang, appealing and warm, her colloquial voice, deep and natural. Erasing the boundaries between genre, between the tradition and the contemporary, Bossa Muffin, is however not a synthetic product created artificially in a laboratory, but rather a flavoursome fruit perfectly matured with unique
experience and personality.
The soft guitar arpeggios and flute notes, on “Agnès”, recall the life of a busker, the highs and lows, intimate deceptions, which sum up Flavia Coelho’s story : a soul captured by the
music and singing. From the age of 14, she practiced her art on stage, travelling from one city to another, experiencing how diverse and rich Brazilian music was. Landing in Paris, which she sings about in the sparkling ”De Paris à Rio”, marked a stepping stone in her career. It was here that Flavia met Bika Bika Pierre, a musician from Cameroon, who “opened the path to African music” for her, encouraging her to take up the guitar and work with fellow musician and producer Victor Vagh.
With her two accomplices, joined by a group of musicians from various horizons, Flavia managed to craft a finely assorted sound; Bossa Muffin, highlights the variety of her vocal talent. The tender touch of “A Foto” or “Decide” to the more explosive “Canta Coming, Liberdade” or “O Que Sou”, and impish sally of “Amor e Futebol,” to the deliciously swinging “Bossa Bika Nova”, shows Flavia, hovering over the musical genres she likes with uncanny ease.
The song Bossa Muffin, tells the story of a man who travels the world in order to find out more about himself. To find out who he is. The voyage as a necessary and illuminating
quest: how better to sum up such a musical wealth inside a debut album, which blows more than a slight hope, but rather has the feel of an accomplishment.
“there’s something quirky and mischievous about Flavia Coelho’s voice… fresh, brassy and irreverent”
Simon Broughton, Evening Standard (on album Bossa Muffin)
“Coelho has an effortless, relaxed style that almost disguises her skill at easing between the slinky melodies and bursts of rapid-fire hip-hop”
Robin Denselow, The Guardian (on album Bossa Muffin)
“Easy-on-the-ear take on cultural fusion”
Songlines (on album Bossa Muffin)