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Cesária Évora

Country of origin:

Cape Verde

Type of music generally:

Traditional (and trad-based) world music


Cesária Évora died in December 2011. Most recent release, Greatest Hits (2015); final release of new material, Mãe Carinhosa (2013)

See also:

Cesária Évora's official site

Wikipedia's entry on Cesária Évora

Cesária Évora's MySpace page


Edith Piaf, Billie Holiday

Comments about live performance:

Went to see Cesária Évora last night at the Cedar Cultural Center here in Minneapolis.
     Cesaria, herself, was quite wonderful. No, she's not quite your typical ecto music, but a cross between French and Latin. She's actually from Cape Verde off the West Coast of Africa and sings in Portuguese.
     Her voice is remarkable. For being an older, tired, rather world-weary looking woman, her voice is incredibly pure and rich—despite the fact she smokes—which she did throughout the concert, despite the fact the concert hall is non-smoking.
     She was quite well-received by the crowd, and I was surprised to see that she didn't speak a word of English to the crowd—she did say a bit in Portuguese, and a few audience members could understand her, and the rest of us could usually get the gist of what she was saying—stuff like "this is going to be our last number", "thanks", etc.
     The band was quite terrific. When you closed your eyes, you could just feel yourself on a warm island somewhere off the coast of Africa, instead of a fairly cold gymnasium-like theater on a cool autumn night in the Midwest.
     For those of you into world music, Edith Piaf, and Latin music in particular, I think you'd enjoy her. I really enjoyed checking her out. (10/4/95,

Recordings include:

  • Distino de Belita (1974, re-released 2003)
  • La Diva Aux Pieds Nus (1988)
  • Mar Azul (1991)
  • Miss Perfumado (1992)
  • Sodade—Les Plus Belles Mornas de Cesária (compilation, 1994)
  • Cesária (1995, re-released 2003)
  • Club Sodade (remixes, 1996)
  • Live à L'Olympia (live, 1996)
  • Cabo Verde (1997)
  • Best of Cesária Évora (compilation, 1998)
  • Café Atlantico (1999)
  • São Vicente di Longe (2001)
  • At the Olympia (live, 2001)
  • Anthology (compilation, 2002)
  • Voz d'Amor (2003)
  • Anthologie—Mornas & Coladeras (Double CD edition of Anthology, 2004)
  • Rogamar (2006)
  • Nha Sentimento (2009)
  • Cesária Évora & (duets, 2010)
  • Mãe Carinhosa (2013)
  • Greatest Hits (2015)

Further info:

DVD releases include Live in Paris and Live D'Amor. Cesária Évora recorded "Lagrumas Negros" with Compay Segundo for his Duets album (2002). "Natal" appears on the World Christmas compilation (1996). "Bésame Mucho" appears on the Great Expectations soundtrack (1998). A live version of "Petit" appears on Live at the Cedar: Visionaries compilation (2006).

Thanks to JoAnn Whetsell for work on this entry.

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Entry last updated 2017-12-16 12:34:49.
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