Sambaguru Latest

The songs Convite Pra Bituca and Sarando were selected as 2007/2008 HEAR IN LA finalists.

The song Tribo Gandhista was nominated for the Los Angeles Music Awards.

Tribo already received 3rd place in the International Songwriting Competition in 2007.

Sambaguru Bio

Sambaguru is an ensemble of musicians from Brazil, Sri Lanka, and the United States that has been playing a wide-ranging blend of original music since 1997. Their rich and extensive repertoire arises from the huge diversity in approaches and techniques that distinguish the personal and regional backgrounds of each band member. It is a vibrant band that has its own stylistic inner tensions among these players from widely separated areas of the globe who share a love of Brazilian music. The result is a musical experience of remarkable depth and quality.

In 1998 Kátia Moraes and Bill Brendle's composition "Não Vá" won 1st place in the World Music category of the John Lennon Songwriting Contest.

Sambaguru is featured on the musical score for the film "Woman On Top", a Fox Searchlight Film released in September 2000.

In 2001and 2002 the group was nominated in the best World Music category for the New Times Newspaper Music Awards.

Sambaguru was selected to be on The California Arts Council Touring Roster 2002-2003.

Sambaguru has performed at The Hollywood Bowl, The Playboy Jazz Festival, The House of Blues, Getty Center, Playboy Jazz SummerFest, Verizon Music Festival, The John Anson Ford Theatre, Salt Lake City International Jazz Festival, The Sweet Pea Festval in Montana, The Santa Monica Festival, The French Quarter Festival in New Orleans, The Sierra Folklife Festival, Riverside Jazz Festival, the African Market Place in Los Angeles, the Grass Valley World Music Festival, IAJE- Jazz Educators Convention, San Jose Jazz Festival, and the Napa Valley Opera House, and many more...

Kátia Moraes
The unique Brazilian singer and lyricist Kátia Moraes began her career in Rio de Janeiro in the 80's with her energetic band "O Espírito da Coisa." Since then she has performed and/or recorded with Sérgio Mendes, Airto Moreira, Oscar Castro-Neves, Elba Ramalho, Rita Lee, Praful, Marc Antoine, George Duke, Slovenian composer Rok Golob, Sandy and Junior, Banda Cheiro de Amor, and also with Latin Grammy nominee, Alex Acuña's and Justo Almario's "Tolú," and Grammy nominee "Latin Project," among others. After moving to Los Angeles in 1990, she started lending her voice to films and television for dubbing and "Voice-overs" The Rio Thing, Midnight Drums, 22-piece Orchestra Feijoada Completa, Sol & Mar, Viver Brasil Dance Company, Los Angeles Contemporary Dance, Ballet Folclórico do Brasil, Badaułü, Man and Machine, and many more.

Kevin Ricard
Kevin Ricard, an intensely talented percussionist whose family's roots lie in the Louisiana bayou country, has toured and appeared on recordings with scores of musical luminaries Joe Zawinul, Wayne Shorter, Kenny Loggins, Stevie Wonder, Bette Midler, Paula Abdul, Sérgio Mendes, The emptations, Diane Reeves, Lionel Richie, and Steve Winwood among others. Ricard's ability to fragment the beat and increase rhythmic pressure is especially gripping, potent. Interacting with the other Sambaguru musicians, he infuses each performance with a special vibrancy conjuring up the effect of power wedded to relaxation.

Grecco Buratto
Born and raised in Porto Alegre, Brazil, Grecco Buratto started his studies at the age of eight. At seventeen, Grecco won a statewide contest for best instrumental solo piece. At 19 Grecco relocated to Los Angeles where he attended the Musicians Institute where he received the Outstanding Human Relations Award and was also nominated for the Stylist Award. His credits include the Fox Searchlight film Woman On Top, the # 1 rated TV show Cuanto Cuesta El Show, and TV commercials for Honda and Wells Fargo. Grecco has recorded with Pink and, with producers Jason Edmonds and Beau Dozier, for artists such as: Blaque, 3LW, Lilo J, Nobodyos Angel, Calvin Richardson, Dream and Boyz II Men. Grecco has performed with R&B singer Mya, Chilean super group La Ley, Sérgio Mendes, Brazilian jazz legends Airto Moreira ad Flora Purim, Julio Iglesias Jr., and K.D. Lang.

Hussain Jiffry
Since arriving in California from his native land of Sri Lanka (via Europe), Hussain Jiffry has become one of the most sought-after bassist Los Angeles. His in-the-pocket feel and versatility has kept his phone ringing in the past fourteen years. Born and raised in Colombo, Sri Lanka, Hussain grew up surrounded by the richly varied traditional music of his country, but also listened constantly to pop, jazz, and R&B that was played over the radio. He started singing in school choirs at ten, took up piano accordion at age twelve and at seventeen started playing electric bass. In 1982 while performing with a local band in Sri Lanka, Hussain was offered to tour Europe with an R&B band, eventually spending six years on the European club circuit. In 1988 he moved to Los Angeles to study music at the Musicians Institute in Hollywood California. He graduated from MI in March 1989, receiving the school's highest award, the Vocational Honors Diploma. In the past fourteen years Hussain has gradually grown busier and more in demand as his reputation has spread as a player, writer, arranger, producer and music educator. He teaches at the Los Angeles Music Academy and also is currently touring with Sérgio Mendes, LA All Stars, and "Yanni".

Tony Shogren
Drummer and percussionist Tony Shogren is the springboard both rhythmically and emotionally for Sambaguru. A native of California, Tony Shogren began studying drums when he was five years old and played his first professional gig at twelve. When he was fifteen, he moved from Fresno,California to South America where he began compiling rhythms distinctive to the various regions, an avocation that he continues to pursue. He has toured and performed at music festivals throughout the U.S. In addition to his film scoring and session work in Los Angeles, he occassionally tours with Sérgio Mendes. His drumming reflects the knowledge he gained from his studies of afro/colonial music of the Americas. As he cocurrently studies to achieve his masters degree in film composition, Shogren also wears another hat as recording engineer for Kátia Moraes & Sambaguru.

Bill Brendle
Bill Brendle is from Santa Barbara, CA, where his musical life began under the guidance of his father, a professor of music at UCSB. He grew up playing jazz and classical music, and later became fascinated by world music, especially the music from Brazil. He has worked with some Brazil's best known recording artists such as Maria Bethânia, Rita Lee, Ginga, and Hermeto Paschoal. He also has been the Musical Director for Sérgio Mendes. He is one of the co-founders of Kátia Moraes & Sambaguru, and is the composer of much of their music. He is currently living in Los Angeles, where he works as a composer for film and television. His credits include the documentary film "Saigon USA" for PBS, and "Woman On Top" starring Penelope Cruz. He loves teaching, has many private students, and has taught piano through UCLA extensions.


Sambaguru by Caesar Lima
Photo by Caesar Lima

Sambaguru EPK (Electronic Press Kit) -