«…Carmen Souza’s … influences from her Cape Verdean background to jazz and modern soul creating this beautifully vibrant, largely acoustic, accessible hybrid. World soul music for the 21st century. …» ~ David Sylvian
Carmen Souza was born in Lisbon (1981) within a Christian family of Cape Verdeans.
Theo Pas'cal, her producer and mentor and one of the best bass players in Portugal, discovered her talent and introduced Carmen to Jazz and other contemporary sounds that markedly influenced her musical development.
Carmen wanted to create a new sound, in her ancestor’s dialect Creole, that would mix traditional African and Cape Verde rhythms like Batuke, Morna, Cola djon, and others, with her jazz contemporary influences, in a totally intimate and acoustic vibe, different from the traditional festive environment of Cape Verdean sounds.
Carmen Souza has been touring extensively around the World since 2005.
Undoubtedly, Carmen Souza have become a true world music force and one of Europe's most in-demand jazz singers, as someone said: «Carmen Souza does not have to decide whether her music is Jazz or 'World Music'. Her style is just as unique as convincing and her Cape Capeverdean roots as evident as her desire to create a new language under the label of 'World Jazz'.
2017 will mark a return to her creole roots with a new album called CREOLOGY.Download full biography
Carmen Souza | LIGRIA (JOY) | CREOLOGY live sessions
Carmen Souza | Donna Lee (Official videoclip)
Carmen Souza | Afri ka | Leverkusener Jazz
Carmen Souza | Song for my father | Satellit Café PARIS
«…Constantly surprising …» ~ JAZZWISE
«…the music is the most beautiful kind that you can ever get to hear anywhere … Splendor Plate!…» ~ Dani Heyvaert - Rootstime.be
«…This perfectly oiled set mixes Cape Verdean rhythms such as morna, Funaná and Batuk with jazz...Epistola is an album that you have to give it time to sink in. The complex beauty of the compositions manifests itself only after a few spins. …»
~ Bas Springer - Mixed World Music
«…Extraordinary opening concert … Carmen Souza's voice is a marvel of nature without fanfare molds … that seems to have a pitch in the throat that makes it impossible to issue a note out of place. …» ~ Epistola Live review, Granada Hoy
«…Inimitable is Carmen Souzas voice. A voice, that carries warmth and melodie the same way as crudeness and edginess…» ~ Jazzthetik
«…Carmen Souza and Theo Pascal reveal with majesty and rhapsody the radiant beauty of this music … Such is the visceral intensity of this music-making that a certain girding of the loins may be required before you listen (to this music) again and again … and again…» ~ Raul da Gama, Latin Jazz Network
«…Whether you are under the sky of Paris, or in the basement of the label, ending up with Carmen Souza is a real experience … A moment of grace, a perfect moment. …» ~ Le Cargo
«…Souza’s vocal matches the cool wail of Parker’s sax, and the accordion mixes world sounds with bop licks…» ~ James Reaney, The London Free Press
«…Portugese-born, of Cape Verdean parentage, opening act Carmen Souza was another of those enchanting surprises that Celtic Connections consistently springs, combining a jazz virtuoso’s vocal technique and range with an array of Lusophone influences, from fado to samba, morna to bossa and much more besides, including a bittersweet, almost Celtic-sounding ballad and a frisky, sunny-hued “Cape Verdean blues” in tribute to the islands’ national drink. …» ~ The Scotsman by Sue Wilson
«…Portuguese singer, guitarist and pianist Carmen Souza’s trio began in Brazil with Milton Nascimento’s Ponta de Areia and quickly established that their approach would be one of laid-back persuasion and quiet mastery. While Souza sang and scatted in voices that ranged from the childlike to the deeply sexy, her superb bassist, Theo Pascal and marvellously relaxed but alert drummer, Elias Kacomanolis often insinuated as much as stated the groove. …» ~ The Herald Scotland by Rob Adams