Júlio Pereira

Júlio Pereira


In his thirty year career as a multi-instrumentalist, a composer and a producer, Júlio Pereira has always guided his artistic endeavors by a sense of the universality of cultural manifestations.

This in no way contradicts the importance of his work in the context of Portuguese folk music, or the importance of an adequately ethnic appreciation of both its sounds and its roots. In fact, his work has always strived to incorporate Portuguese tradition into the aesthetic currents that have characterized a varied succession of “contemporaneities”.

Thus his oeuvre, comprising 15 LPs, starts by reflecting the importance of musical innovation during the 60s and 70s and proceeds to devote itself to a fresh recuperation of the “quasi lost” sounds of traditional instruments — most typically exemplified by "Cavaquinho" (1981), "Braguesa" (1982) and "O meu bandolim" (1992). He has also worked towards a synthesis of traditional sounds with new and ever-changing accoustic possibilities — an interest that was to be particularly apparent in the 90s, and is especially well-documented in "Rituais" (2000). As a result of all this, Júlio Pereira has risen to the stature of a major figure in the world of Portuguese music of the second half of the twentieth century.

Although his work has not been primarily concerned with putting words to music, a discriminating poetic sensibility has recently inspired him to produce a record — entitled "Faz-de-conta" (Make-Believe) — where a number of first-rate Portuguese-speaking authors, such as Eugénio de Andrade and Vinicius de Moraes, are brought together.

2007 began as a promising year for Júlio Pereira. His latest album was released in June: "Geografias", and he makes a comeback to his favorite instrument, the mandolin. Bernardo Couto (portuguese guitar) and Miguel Veras (guitar) were his musicians, and as his special guests were Sara Tavares and Marisa Pinto. The surprising "Geografias" is a mingle of the Mediterranean mandolin, the Portuguese guitar and the Celtic Bouzouki. This album has a wonderful art work made by Salomé Nascimento, the artist responsible for the album cover.

Julio Pereira’s ability and wide experience are also attested to by a hundred records on which he has participated as an instrumentalist, an orchestrator or a producer. Finally, mention should also be made of the importance of his close association (begun in the late 70s) with José Afonso’s own career, and of his collaboration with Pete Seeger and The Chieftains.


Júlio Pereira