Ramana Vieira & Ensemble

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Bio

Ramana Vieira sings Fado like it’s never been sung before. Mundo Portuguese Magazine has called her “the new voice of Portuguese world music.” The San Francisco Chronicle says that “no one in the United States is doing more to breathe new life into Fado.” According to the New York Times, “the conservatory-trained singer Ramana Vieira adds a New Age sensibility and instrumentation to the music... more

Ramana Vieira sings Fado like it’s never been sung before. Mundo Portuguese Magazine has called her “the new voice of Portuguese world music.” The San Francisco Chronicle says that “no one in the United States is doing more to breathe new life into Fado.” According to the New York Times, “the conservatory-trained singer Ramana Vieira adds a New Age sensibility and instrumentation to the music with cello and drums.” Fado means fate, and you can think of Fado as the Portuguese version of the blues, a heartfelt, haunting music full of despair and lost love. Ramana and her virtuoso ensemble play classics and originals, digging deep into traditional Fado and transforming it into something utterly current.

Ramana grew up in San Leandro in a family of Portuguese immigrants, singing along with her mother to the records of Amália Rodrigues, the Queen of Fado. Ramana studied piano and wanted to sing like Tori Amos. “Amália Rodrigues is in my DNA,” Ramana said in a recent interview, “but so is Kate Bush, and I started out in a new-wave band.” She studied voice and acting at the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco and had Broadway aspirations – until a record producer recommended that she explore her Portuguese roots. Since then, she’s released three albums, including her latest, Lágrimas de Rainha (Tears of a Queen), which Billboard Magazine praised for its “willingness to take chances” and “soulful, torchy performances.” Her ensemble features Laura Boytz on cello, Jeffrey Luiz on guitar, Stephen LaPorta on percussion, and Alberto Ramirez on electric bass.

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