Joe Vasconcellos

Joe Vasconcellos

BandWorldLatin

“Joe” is one of the most popular musicians in Chile today. His unique mix of Brazilian rhythms, Chilean folk, and Latin sounds with politically charged lyrics has made him into a huge crossover success ready to be heard around the world.

Biography

Joe Vasconcellos is one of the most popular musicians in Chile today. His music, a unique fusion born out of a life of traveling, is dominated by Latin and Brazilian rhythms and completely dispels whatever notion the listener might have of what Chilean music should be. Flowing from samba to cumbia to reggae, sometime all within the same song, Joe also incorporates the music of Chile's native Mapuches into to the mix alongside more traditional blues and pop. Joe Vasconcellos embodies the essence of what is today's “world music”--a fusion of cultures and sounds from around the globe--and channels it through intelligent traditional and pop songs that have made him a superstar in Chile.

Born in Chile to a Chilean mother and Brazilian father, “Joe” (as he is affectionately known in Chile) spent his youth in Italy listening to and DJing Brazilian music. He returned to his homeland in the late 70s and soon joined the legendary progressive-folk band Congreso, with whom he wrote one of their most famous hits, “Hijo del Sol Luminoso” (1985), a song that continues to be heard throughout the country to this day. But after 6 years and much success with the group, Joe once again felt the need to travel, and so he left to go to Brazil, where he studied Brazilian percussion and was part of the great Brazilian singer María Creuza’s group.

Feeling the need to follow his own calling, he returned to his native Chile after 5 years and began a solo career, starting from the bottom as an underground artist with a unique blend of all his influences, charting a territory that was very different from the popular music at the time. A mix of Brazilian rhythms, Chilean folk, and Latin sounds with politically charged lyrics, his crossover success, from a folk musician to becoming one of the highest selling artists in the country, has proven the power of his urban, social and ecological songs. After a string of hit records, his live greatest hits album Vivo was certified 5 times-platinum in 2000 (one of the biggest selling albums in Chilean history), and he has since received numerous awards including being knighted by the Brazilian government, which distinguished him with the Order of Rio Branco for his support through his music of the integration between Chile and Brazil. In 2004 he made his first ever tour of the US, and 2005 saw his music appearing in three major motion pictures in Chile, as well as being the theme song to a hit reality show, as he finished his latest album, Banzai.

His contemporary musical synthesis, rising as the result of an incredible life experience and a sincere vision (regional and at the same time universal), fit perfectly in the Chile of the 1990´s, a society that was re-finding its roots, re-locating itself in the region, and connecting itself with the world. Day by day he is more and more representative, in his eclecticism, of the musical crossbreeding possessed by countries like Chile. In that resides the secret of his local success as well as the attraction of his music for other countries and peoples of the world. In 2005 Joe Vasconcellos released his latest album, Banzai, to great success in Chile. The album will be released in April 2006 in Spain, and he will be on tour in Europe, USA, and Argentina in 2006.

Discography

Esto es sólo una canción / 1989 ...Re-released 2000
Verde Cerca / 1992 ...Re-released 2000
Toque / 1995
Transformación / 1997
Vivo / 1999
En Paz / 2003
Banzai / 2005

Soundtrack: Taxi para tres / 2001
DVD (live + videos) Al mal tiempo, buena cara / 2003