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Maria Mendes

Maria Mendes is one the current rising stars on the jazz scene.

After successful performances at the Montreux Jazz Festival, Festival de Música de Inverno do Rio de Janeiro and Dutch Jazz Dag, Portuguese Jazz vocalist Maria Mendes will perform a series of concerts for the presentation of her debut album “Along the Road”. This is an international concert tour that started September 2012 with two sold out concerts in Portugal followed by a third sold out concert at the North Sea Jazz Club in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. This international tour will see Maria performing throughout South America, Europe, Asia and the USA in 2013.

In 2012 Maria signed a worldwide recording contract with the New York based jazz label, Dot Time Records. With the release of her debut album “Along the Road” Maria has drawn the attention of both the jazz media and public.

Maria Mendes is an undeniable talented jazz singer with incredible inventive and unique vocal abilities. Maria is known for her crystal clear voice, creative and exciting phrasing and vocal virtuosity. All these qualities make her singing tanding out elegance, charm and vivid charisma. Her culturally rich background has influenced her style with elements of the Bossa Nova’s gentle groove, the melancholy of the Portuguese Fado and the American jazz swing of the early 50s. Carrying these natural abilities with her on stage, Maria’s performances have provided her with international acclaim, significant awards and rave reviews while at the same time building her a loyal international following.

During the Montreux Jazz Festival in 2010 Quincy Jones stated “I see a promising and shining future for this young talented singer”. With the release of “Along the road” we can see that Mr Jones prediction was right.


- Winner of the “Nederlands Jazz Vocalisten Concours”, HOLLAND (2009) - Runner-up of the “Montreux Jazz Voice Competition” SWITZERLAND (2010) – president of the jury was jazz legend Quincy Jones - 1st prize for Improvisation and 2nd prize overall at the “Jazz Voices International competition”, LITHUANIA (2010) - Runner-up of the “Brussels Young Jazz Singers Competition”, BELGIUM (2008)


Neumann KSM 105 Shure KSM 9 Wireless


Album Review

Maria Mendes: Saudade, Colours of Love

Read "Saudade, Colours of Love" reviewed by Richard J Salvucci

Every language has words that defy translation. Take “saudade" in Portuguese or Galician. Or “fado." Go to a standard dictionary, and “saudade" appears as “nostalgia" or “longing." In reality, a native speaker will tell you “saudade" means a kind of indefinable melancholy for people, places or things that may only exist in the imagination, and “fantasy" will not even come close. “Fado" is an art form, defined as a mournful or fatalistic Portuguese folk song. Perhaps “flamenco" is familiar, but ...

Album Review

Maria Mendes: Close To Me

Read "Close To Me" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

A great affection for fado music and its poetic lyrics, an appreciation for how a jazz palette can color the form, and a love of orchestral seasonings all influence this expansive outing from Maria Mendes. It's an effort that's far from the norm and right where the Portuguese vocalist lives and loves to be. Teaming up with pianist/arranger extraordinaire John Beasley, Mendes delivers originals, fado favorites, and, for good measure, a new number written for her by ...

Album Review

Maria Mendes: Along the Road

Read "Along the Road" reviewed by John Kelman

Virtuosity needn't be on display at every moment; restraint, in fact, is an important yet often overlooked aspect of true virtuosity. Norma Winstone is a clear example; certainly capable of plenty, more often than not the British singer's performances are defined by nuance, subtlety and a direct line to the heart of the music. Maria Mendes is another, with the spirit of Brazil looming large over this young Portuguese-born/Netherlands-resident singer's impressive debut, Along the Road--a nine-song set of standards, material ...

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What press worldwide says: – “… with her clear voice and her own style the perfect vocal jazz album has arrived” TELEGRAPH (Netherlands) – “Mendes immediately profiles herself as a strong jazz singer. Intimacy and beauty from the first track” JAZZISM (Netherlands) – “There is no doubt that Maria Mendes is one of the best Jazz artists of this era” WRITTEN IN MUSIC.COM (Netherlands) – “Maria in the centre of the world” EXPRESSO (Portugal) – “What Maria Mendes express with your voice is art and a real treat for the heart and ears. Impressive!” DRAAI OM JE OREN.NL (Netherlands) – “Sultry, perfectly timed Bossa Jazz” NRC (Netherlands) – “… her vocal class shows it all, really perfect” JAZZ ZINE.NL (Netherlands) – “Innocentia picks up where Along The Road ceased, but a few degrees more intense where the phenomenal vocals, musicianship and originality are paramount at this fantastic record” ON TOP OF MUSIC.NL (Netherlands) – “‘Maria Mendes’s voice is full in character… Intimate and exhilarating” CULTUURPODIUM.NL (Netherlands) – “The new language of the Jazz” JAZZ BULLETIN (Netherlands) – “Sparkling debut! Mendes makes clear she has absolutely nothing to prove” ALL ABOUT JAZZ (USA) – “A promising debut from a singer that uses the world as her main stage” PÚBLICO (Portugal) – “Maria Mendes impressed Basel with her elegant voice” BASLER ZEITUNGT (Switzerland) – 5***** O GLOBO (Brazil) – 4****1/2 JAZZISM (Netherlands) What jazz legends say: – “I see a promising shining future for this young talented singer” QUINCY JONES (USA) – “An album sung from the heart” SHEILA JORDAN (USA) – “Maria Mendes singing is wonderful” DORI CAYMMI (Brazil) – “Beautiful singing and great scat” HERMETO PASCOAL (Brazil) – “I hope her crystal-clear voice and her precise diction will conquer your hearts like it did mine” DAVID LINX (Belgium) – “Listening to Maria’s singing is like feeling the morning glow touching my skin

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Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

Saudade, Colours of...

Challenge Records


Close To Me

Justin Time Records



Sony Music / Harmonia Mundi


Along the Road

Dot Time Records


Hermeto's Fado for Maria

From: Saudade, Colours of Love
By Maria Mendes

Olha so no meu Olhar

From: Along the Road
By Maria Mendes


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