Morena Soul is a locally grown Brazilian music band from Austin, TX. The core members are singer Sarah Altoé, Guitarist/Songwriter Frank Almendra and percussionist Mike Longoria, their intention is to bring a variety of Brazilian beats to their own creative light an treat them with modern arrangements and plenty of musicality.
Sarah was born and raised in Rio de Janeiro. A true Carioca girl. She grew up caressed by Samba melodies and the sway of palm trees. From Rio's warm beaches Sarah brings the smoothness in her voice and from Rio's suburbs and tumultuous hills she carries the power of the Samba on her feet.
Frank was also born in Rio but he was raised in the Brazilian Northeast, a very different region both visually and musically. From that area comes an array of styles such as Baião, Forró, Maracatu, Carimbó and many others. Frank immersed himself in that richness of sound and also used to play in Rock bands and Bossa-Nova groups in his early years. This sonic miscegenation, as typical as the Brazilian race itself, comes alive out of his music and songwriting style.
Mike is a percussionist and drummer. He has a Jazz background but became a specialist on World music percussion, mastering a wide variety of instruments with highlight on the Pandeiro, the most typical Brazilian samba instrument. He has been playing professionally for over 15 years and has toured all over the U.S and Europe with a variety of bands. Lately it has settled in Austin and dedicated his time sharing his experiences with the community on several social/educational projects and playing on local bands such as: Os Alquimistas and Seu Jacinto.
Sarah and Frank got together in Austin, TX during 2010 and formed a band named Manga Rosa, that became very well known in the Latin/World Music scene in the region. In 2011 they joined forces with Mike on this new and exciting project. They have added Marcel Ribas on Bass and Bruno Vinezof on percussion to complete the band and to help them expand their musical horizons.