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Eugenio

The Music of Ulisses Rocha

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Ulisses Rocha was born in Rio de Janeiro in 1960. He started to play the guitar at an early age and was very curious and always looking for many different things. As a result, his process of learning the guitar mixed many different influences, so that he learned classical music, jazz, traditional Brazilian songs, Rock'n'Roll and many other styles.

The result is a style that's difficult to define. His music is harmonically sophisticated, technically challenging and usually easy on the ear. As diversified as his early influences, his career followed an interesting path and he arranged recordings of many Brazilian singers. He was also part of the Grupo D'Alma in the 70's, a guitar trio that is said to have influenced Al diMeola, John McLaughlin and Paco de Lucia to start playing together.

His recordings are very ecclectic and not tied to the Brazilian tradition of Choros and other musical genres that were forged on the guitar over the last 100 years. Instead, Ulisses and other musicians of his generation received a lot of influence of pop music and that translated in a rich addition to the Brazilian music for the guitar.

Here's Ulisses playing his arrangement of Ponteio, a very popular song written by Edu Lobo and Capinam.

Now you can hear Ulisses playing one of his compositions, Volta Rapidinho, which is a baião, a rhythim typical of the Brazilian northeast, where one of the most interesting characteristics is that the basses always seem a little delayed and "shifted" from where they are "supposed" to be.

Volta Rapidinho (Ulisses Rocha)

This is one of Ulisses' most recent compositions, Desatino. The portuguese word "desatino" (do not confuse with "destino") doesn't have any direct translation in other languages. It's commonly used in poetry to describe the state of mind a person who falls in love can be. A direct translation to words like madness or crazyness could sound too rough, as there's a certain lyricism in the meaning of desatino, depending on the context.

Desatino (Ulisses Rocha)

Ulisses also has been developing a remarkable work as a guitar teacher in a highly accredited University in Brazil. As part of that work, he wrote a series of 10 Studies for the solo guitar. The 9th study focus on developing a technique that was widely used by Baden Powell, which consists of playing full chords with only the i-m fingers, instead of i-m-a. In fact, he uses that in Ponteio video, pay attention to his fingers at 00:38.

Estudo Nº 9 (Ulisses Rocha)

Related Links:

Official website: http://www.ulissesrocha.com

Malandro Records: http://www.brazilianjazz.com/artists/moleque/bio.html

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Does anyone know anything about the Ulisses Rocha CD Preciso De Ti? I've seen copies for sale online but can't find any information about what tracks are on the CD and who else, if anyone, performed on the CD.

Thanks!

--Frank

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Frank, I don't know any of Ulisses' CDs with that name. I'll check with Ulisses or maybe he can answer that himself (he's a member of this forum).

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Thanks Eugenio! I'll look forward to hearing from one or both of you. I did think it odd that such a CD was not listed on Ulisses' website but I have seen listings for it in several places online.

Take care!

--Frank

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Does anyone know anything about the Ulisses Rocha CD Preciso De Ti? I've seen copies for sale online but can't find any information about what tracks are on the CD and who else, if anyone, performed on the CD.

Thanks!

--Frank

Hi Frank

I never recordered a Cd called Preciso de ti. Can you give the adress were it is available? I want to understand what is happening.

Thank you

Ulisses

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Hello Ulisses, doing a google search it is possible to find this CD at Amazon. Almost no info about it, as Frank said:

Preciso de Ti

And interesting, according to answers.com, one of your most representative albums is Preciso de Ti .

Good luck.

Rodrigo

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Hi Ulisses,

As Rodrigo mentioned, it is listed at Amazon. If you do a Google search for "Ulisses Rocha Preciso de Ti" you will also find a number of other sources. It would be interesting to find out more about what people are actually selling if it is not a CD you know about. I am a big fan of your music and did find it odd that this was not listed in the discography on your website.

I hope you'll make it out to Los Angeles to play for us at some point!

Take care!

--Frank

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His latest CD is fully published, you can get the sheet music for the studies and the other pieces. The transcriptions were written by either Ulisses himself or Diogo Carvalho under Ulisses' supervision. There's only one person taking care of distributing his printed music in the USA, guess who? :rolleyes:

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