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Waldemar Bastos

From Angola to Portugal

Saturday / January 31, 2015 / 7:00pm

Few artists from any nation have created such a passionate songbook of political, social and personal issues as musical legend Waldemar Bastos. This Angolan-born composer, singer and guitarist makes a rare U.S. appearance in the Aratani World Series.

When I play my music, I talk to God. — Waldemar Bastos

In 1982, Waldemar Bastos arrived in Portugal fleeing Angola where a brutal civil war was under way. His heartfelt signature piece “Sofrimento” speaks of the people’s struggle for freedom — a message inspired by his own political imprisonment. Waldemar Bastos is revered and loved in his native Angola.

He melds profound longing with the effervescence of African and Brazilian pop, transcending sorrow with sparkle and grace. — New York Times

Portuguese fado, Brazilian samba, and Angolan semba converge with tenderness and soul in heart-wrenching ballads with vocal sensuality and melodic grace. Compelled by a quest for healing within the sorrow of memory, his magnetic, irresistible vocal timbre, phrasing and lyrics touch the hearts and minds of all who listen.

Derek Nakamoto (piano), Mitchell Long (guitar) & Alex Acuña (percussion)

Pre-performance Conversation: Peter Lownds

Brazilian Food Truck/ DJ music 6-7 pm

Aratani Theatre

Japanese American Cultural & Community Center (JACCC)
244 South San Pedro Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012


Meet the Artists