"Cape Verdean songstress Carmen Souza has it all: excellent repertoire, a nimble and versatile voice that glides effortlessly through a huge range of registers and a totally relaxed stage presence. Moreover, she swings like hell. A couple of disarmingly witty disclosures about her private life is all she needs to transform a concert hall into an intimate living room...Whether she is singing the plaintive morna (the Cape Verdean variation of the blues) or an exuberant batuco Souza is always convincing owing to her jazzy sense of timing and uncanny ability to bring several shades of nuance to even the highest and lowest notes she sings.” (Ton Maas De Volkskrant 15 October 2008 concert review, Amsterdam)
Carmen Souza was born in Lisbon into a family of Cape Verdeans, and grew up bathed in a mixed language environment of Cape Verdean Creole, which her parents spoke at home, and Portuguese, perpetually immersed in the Cape Verdean way of life. After a stint in her teens singing professionally in a Lusophone Gospel Choir, and a period dabbling in musical genres as diverse as Funk, Soul, and Jazz, Carmen decided she wanted to create a new sound. Singing in her ancestors' Creole language, and a mix of traditional African and Cape Verde rhythms like Batuku, Morna, Kola San Djon, and others, and blending in contemporary jazz influences, Carmen released her intimate debut album Ess ê nha Cabo Verde in 2005 to critical acclaim. After her international breakthrough performance at the 2005 WOMAD at Reading Festival, and performances at a string of top world music and jazz festivals, Carmen has now come out with her second album, Verdade (Truth), which highlights her sweet and versatile voice that glides effortlessly through a huge range with a jazzy sense of timing reminiscent of artists such as Rickie Lee Jones and Diana Krall, and, true to the title, with incredible authenticity in her singing.
Tickets go on sale at noon Fri Mar 20 from the Cedar Ticketline (612-338-2674 ext 2), Cedar outlets, and online at Ticketweb.
This activity is made possible in part by a grant provided by the Minnesota State Arts Board, through an appropriation by the Minnesota State Legislature from the Minnesota arts and cultural heritage fund with money from the vote of the people of Minnesota on November 4, 2008, and a grant from the Wells Fargo Foundation Minnesota.