Vocalist Maggie Green’s self-titled album of Brazilian music conveys a longing for the endless beaches and samba rhythms of Rio de Janeiro. With her soft yet rhythmic interpretations of bossa nova and samba, sung in masterful Portuguese, the brilliant waters seem but a heartbeat away. This may sound like a stretch for a girl who grew up in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, but for Maggie, it was just a natural progression.
During her early years, Maggie sat at the piano and studied the complex harmonies and melodies of Bach, Mozart and Beethoven. However, while pursuing a degree in classical piano at Michigan State University, her ear began to wander toward jazz music, especially the haunting vocals of Billie Holiday and Chet Baker. This proved to be a significant point, for she not only moved from classical music to jazz, but she also strayed from the piano and focused on her voice. Maggie enrolled at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA.
While at Berklee, Maggie honed her jazz skills and began to delve into Brazilian music. Studying with vocalist Mili Bermejo, she became fascinated with the syncopated rhythms of Brazil. After graduating from Berklee in 2000, Maggie moved to Columbus, Ohio and began establishing herself as a vocal artist. Following a string of performances in the region including the Columbus Arts Festival, the Columbus Jazz and Rib Fest, the Columbus Latino Festival as well as many night club dates, Maggie began to make appearances outside of Ohio, performing at festivals and clubs from Massachusetts to California.