Sivuca Biography

Severino Dias De Oliveira, b. 26 March 1930, Itabaiana, Brazil, d. 14 December 2006, João Pessoa, Paraíba, Brazil. Sivuca played accordion and guitar from an early age, developing an extensive repertoire that ranged through forró, bossa nova, jazz and folk music of many lands. He played in Pernambuco from his early teenage years and by the 50s was established as a recording artist and was also becoming known on radio and television. His fame spread internationally and he performed in Europe with Los Brasileiros in the late 50s. From the mid-60s he spent a dozen years in the USA, mainly in New York City, then toured South America and also Scandinavia where he was especially popular, visiting the region in the late 60s, returning in the 80s and again in the 90s.

Among artists with whom Sivuca worked during his long career are Harry Belafonte, Oscar Brown Jnr. , Miriam Makeba, Clara Nunes, Humberto Teixeira, Toots Thielemans, Sylvia Vrethammar, Ulf Wakenius and Putte Wickman. Over the years, Sivuca, who was married to composer Glória Gadelha, made numerous albums, many of which have yet to be reissued. Despite this, even after his death he remains a very important figure in the spread of appreciation and understanding of traditional Brazilian music.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.