Grounded in the soft subtle chords of the beach, the clubs, and the favelas of Rio de Janeiro; driven by the pulsing rhythms of late Miles; founded on the desire for fun and good grooves, the band RIO GARAGE was born.
Mary Flannery: Vocals/Keyboard “The music of Brazil is my folk music. It’s the music my parents played on the stereo and in the car. I’ve been listening to it all my life.”
After many years abroad – fronting a band (Kyoto del Mondo Agogo) in Japan, studying sitar and vocal music in India, and flamenco guitar in Spain – Mary moved to Washington, DC. By day she composed and recorded music for documentaries and corporate videos. By night her living room was a gathering place for friends and musicians. Jam sessions went late into the night, covering everything from Bacharach to Bebop to Brazilian standards. In 2004 Mary, along with her sister on bass, her sister’s boyfriend on drums, and an old Peace Corps buddy on trumpet, took the jam out of the house and into the clubs. They called themselves RIO GARAGE.
Roberto Berimbau: Bass Born in Sao Paolo, Brazil, Roberto is a sought after percussionist and bass player specializing in Brazilian music and jazz. For most of the 80’s he lived in New York City, where he performed regularly at SOB’s with Brazilian luminaries such as Pei De Boi, Beth de Carvalho, and ZeZe Mota. He has played with all the Samba Schools of NY & DC, and recorded with Thievery Corporation. He opened for Gilberto Gil at Lisner Auditorium, and for Roberto Carlos at Constitution Hall. Today, besides playing with RIO GARAGE, Roberto performs regularly with the Wayne Wilentz trio and tours up and down the eastern seaboard with Banda Rebolisso.
John Shepherd: Drums John started playing drums and percussion when he was 9 years old. Under the tutelage of the timpanist for the Marine Corps Band, he studied all the concert percussion instruments, including xylophone and marimba. In high school John made the decision to
concentrate on the trap set. His first paying job was at an amusement park where he played drums for a wandering bebop quartet, dressed up as a hobo or a chicken. John has performed with bands of almost every imaginable genre – zydeco, swing, free jazz, country, rock, surf, and now Brazilian.