A Little Bit About the Band....
Co-founders Anje West & Kym Ambrose met and fell in love in 1994, in Brisbane. Not much going on then
Brazilian-music-wise, apart from the godfather of Brazilian music in Australia, Jaider de Oliveira, who'd previously been
working in Western Australia and Sydney. They met at the Woodford Folk Festival a few years later, when he
assisted Anje with a Portuguese translation. During the band's first few years, Jaider was an enormous help as they
navigated some unfamiliar musical ground.
The band has worked consistently for 21 years, never wavering from their belief that this music deserves a wider
audience. In the beginning, there were precious few musicians playing this music anywhere in Australia,
(and even fewer Australian musicians playing it!), and their commitment to bringing this music to general audiences
has seen them heralded as pioneers of Brazilian music on home soil.
Influenced primarily by Brazilian jazz and bossa nova, theirs is a seductive, elegant and lush sound, underpinned always
by the impeccable groove of Owen Newcomb on bass, Lachlan Hawkins on drums, and completed by the beautiful guitar
work of Bruce Woodward. You can count on one hand (maybe two?!), the number of musicians dedicated to performing
Brazilian music in Australia for more than two decades, and in this ensemble, you have some of the most experienced,
superb players of Brazilian music in Australia. For real.
The group is based in Brisbane, Australia, where they have a loyal following, and have maintained a high profile on the
national world and jazz music scenes through the quality and consistency of their live shows. They tour occasionally,
slotting in around the heavy touring commitments of their fellow band-member's other groups.
Anje & Kym have lived in Brazil three times in the past 15 years, immersing themselves in the life and culture of the country they've grown deeply attached to, studying with exceptional teachers, establishing and nurturing relationships with musicians and venues, and loving the fact that their music is embraced so whole-heartedly in Brazil. Not for its authenticity, but for its respectful re-interpretation and difference. The band has always acknowledged that it's not about trying to sound like they're Brazilian....because they're not. It's always simply been about exploring the music they love, and playing and composing with commitment and integrity. And that probably has something to do with why they are still being sought after for festival and concert appearances, and continue to explore this music and grow with it as the years pass.
Over the summer of 2012/13, on their third adventure to Brazil, Anje and Kym embarked on an 11 date concert tour which took them across three states and four cities, becoming a truly international group with addition of legendary Brazilian jazz rhythm section; drummer Marcio Bahia (Hermeto Pascoal/Hamilton de Holanda) and bassist Mazinho Ventura (Marcos Valle), along with guitarists Dino Rangel and Beto Lopes (MIlton Nascimento).
The band heads into the studio in May 2019 to record their third album, with special guest, Marcio Bahia.
Photo Credit: Chris Osborne