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“Bossalingo began in the mid-1990s, playing the classic songs of Brazilian composers such as Antonio Carlos Jobim and Luiz Bonfá and delighting audiences with regular gigs at U Street’s Chi Cha Lounge. But after a five-year layoff, things seem to have changed. At the Nov. 7 release show for their new CD, Steps Beyond, the group took listeners at Blues Alley on a Pan-American tour of Latin rhythms that went well beyond the boundaries of its Brazil-focused name. Bossalingo’s core musicians were augmented at this performance by New York-based pianist Arturo O’Farrill, founder and director of the Grammy Award-winning Afro-Latin Jazz Orchestra. Opening the set with an original composition, “The Cat’s on Sugar Mountain,” bandleader, composer and guitarist Michael Joseph Harris’s playing reflected Latin, jazz, folk and rock influences. Throughout the night, his nylon-string acoustic guitar work would prove inventive and melodic...”
“One of the best...Bossalingo, a Latin jazz quartet founded by guitarist Mike Harris, Bossalingo started as a low key jam session for Harris and anyone who wanted to sit in with him on a quiet weeknight. It evolved into something more serious, and soon Harris had the band in the studio to record Bossalingo's debut CD. One of the best local releases in recent years, the CD is a calm, atmospheric affair, featuring such known songs as "One Note Samba" and "Autumn Leaves," side by side with some Harris originals.”
"Bossalingo seduces its audience...you can almost feel the music stretching an arm over your shoulder."
"Mike Harris is a guitar sensation, a sheer force on the new Manhattan underground scene at this time."
“Michael’s improvisations are intelligent explorations of new melodies spun out over often familiar chord changes."”
“Bossalingo performs for The NATO 50th Anniversary Gala :: The showcase event for the city is Saturday night's reception in the marble-columned atrium of the National Building Museum. Ministers and other dignitaries from 25 foreign nations that are members of the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council have been invited. Other guests will include city officials and other notables, members of the Clinton administration, and representatives of the State Department and the NATO Host Committee. Three of the District's best-known and most diverse neighborhoods – Adams-Morgan, Anacostia and Capitol Hill – will be represented at the reception with scenery, lighting, music and food. The Urban Nation Voices of Youth H.I.P. H.O.P. Choir will perform, along with Bossalingo, a Latin jazz band from Adams-Morgan."”
“Harris knows about high energy, as he also co-founded the local funk band Truth Groove that performs most weekends at Felix in Adams- Morgan. Like Bossalingo, that band is a collective of sorts. "I could name 20 or 30 local musicians who've played in Truth Groove the past few years," Harris says, "and Bossalingo is getting to be that way too." The revolving lineup of Bossalingo includes drummers Alejandro Lucini, Chuck Ferrell, Mark Prince and Tom Barrack, percussionists Juan Giovani Travez, Mamabi Nyazuma, Alfredo Mojica, Luis Marin and Jose Lopez and bassists Leonardo Lucini and Eric Leifert.”
"It shouldn't be surprising that the Washington, DC area, home to Felix Grant and Charlie Byrd, the two men who helped introduce Brazilian music to a wide audience in this country, should produce a group like Bossalingo. What is surprising is that players so young should have such a strong feeling for this music. They sound like they've been playing it all their lives. And what's even more surprising are the arrangements and improvising...This record is truly a pleasant surprise!"