Celso Fonseca

Decades: 1980s 1990s 2000s


15 November 1956, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Brazil’s ‘best kept secret’, Fonseca is actually a keystone of his country’s music scene. He has collaborated with luminaries such as Gilberto Gil, Caetano Veloso, Marisa Monte and Bebel Gilberto, and is a producer of some repute, working on albums by Gil, Gal Costa, Virginia Rodrigues, Daniela Mercury and Daúde. For the latter he received the equivalent of a Brazilian Grammy, the Sharp Award, for Best Pop Rock Arranger. He has also written hit songs for Veloso, Costa, Gil, Maria Bethânia, Milton Nascimento, Carlinhos Brown and Vinicius Cantuária.

Unlike many of Brazil’s younger musicians, Fonseca does not come from a musical family. Rather, having been inspired to pick up the guitar by the music of Baden Powell (he says the instrument felt ‘quite familiar to me’), he played as a hobby until he met Gilberto Gil in 1982 and was invited to join his...

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