Antonio Carlos Ribeiro Barbosa Lima (born December 17, 1944) is a classical and jazz guitarist from Brazil. He has spent most of his professional life as a resident in the United States, devoting much of his time as a recitalist on international concert tours. He has appeared often as a soloist and with orchestras
Born on December 17, 1944 in São Paulo, Brazil, Barbosa-Lima grew up in the Brooklyn district of the city. He states that he began playing guitar when he was seven.
Barbosa-Lima recalls that his father, Manuel Carlos, hired an instructor to teach him how to play guitar. The lessons were then transferred from the father to the son, and the child became known in the neighborhood as a prodigy. After two years of lessons with Benedito Moreira, the young man was introduced to Brazilian guitarist composer Luiz Bonfá. Under the recommendation of Bonfa, Barbosa-Lima was directed to Isaias Savio, the father of the classical guitar school of Brasil. At the behest of family, friends, and acquaintances, he made his concert debut in Sao Paulo in November 1957 when he was twelve years old. During the next year, he performed on a television variety show that introduced young musicians and gave a solo concert in Rio de Janeiro. He signed a contract with Chantecler, which was part of RCA Brazil, and in June 1958 he released his first album, Dez Dedos Magicos Num Violão De Ouro.
In 1960 Barbosa-Lima began the life of a traveling musician, touring in Montevideo, Uruguay, and eastern Brazil. He made his American debut in Washington, D.C, in 1967. He toured through the U.S. and Central and South America. Barbosa-Lima was now making his own arrangements for guitar. In 1964 he released an album of arrangements by the popular Brazilian songwriter, Catullo. Friends of Barbosa-Lima heard these arrangements and encouraged him to continue arranging for guitar.
In 1967 Barbosa-Lima gave his New York debut at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall (then known as Carnegie Recital Hall). This concert was met once again with excellent reviews and moved his career onto the global concert stage. In 1968 he went to Madrid to play for Andrés Segovia. After returning two years later, he gave a concert in New York’s Town Hall.
At the conclusion of this concert he was approached by Harold Shaw and Shaw Concerts who offered him a steady stream of concert dates within the United States. With the heavy concert schedule and Master classes now available to him through Shaw Concerts Barbosa-Lima took a teaching position at Carnegie Mellon University (1974–1978). It was during this time that Barbosa-Lima’s reputation as a world class guitarist began to blossom and composers began writing works for him. One very important composer of this time was Alberto Ginastera who composed the Sonata for guitar, op. 47 for Barbosa-Lima. The later end of the decade (1977) saw Barbosa-Lima perform Francisco Mignone’s Concerto for Guitar and Orchestra at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.
As the 1980s began Barbosa-Lima moved to New York City (1981) and took a teaching post at the Manhattan School of Music. Once in New York Barbosa-Lima began to perform with Jazz guitarist Charlie Byrd. Upon hearing Barbosa-Lima’s arrangements Mr. Byrd immediately arranged for Barbosa-Lima to meet and perform for Carl Jefferson (the owner of Concord records). Carl Jefferson signed Barbosa-Lima and eleven recordings were to follow on the Concord Jazz label.
In 1982 Barbosa-Lima made frequent contact with fellow Brazilian, Antônio Carlos Jobim, one of the world’s most popular composers of all time. Barbosa-Lima would often meet him at Jobim’s upper east side apartment in New York City for impromptu jam sessions. It was out of these sessions that came the recording Carlos Barbosa-Lima plays Music by Antônio Carlos Jobim and George Gershwin a crossover CD before the word was popular. Jobim was immediately impressed with Barbosa-Lima’s arranging technique for guitar which Barbosa-Lima describes as “multi-linear” basically meaning several voices moving at once like classical guitar technique. At the time of their meetings Jobim was more familiar with the Brazilian guitar technique which utilized a “block chord” technique as Jobim himself used. “…Barbosa-Lima brings an ear attuned to counterpoint and technique that gives each independent line its own voice.
His transcriptions find and define every moving part, in bossa novas and countermelodies together as he does in Gershwin, he sounds like a team of guitarists”. And in keeping with Barbosa-Lima’s multi-linear technique the Cuban composer Leo Brouwer, who has long been a personal friend of his, has said; “…when unknowingly I [Brouwer] walked by a hotel room and heard guitar music I thought I was listening to a guitar duo and then suddenly recognized the music and realized it was Barbosa-Lima playing solo. If I weren’t a guitar player and guitar composer who noticed a mistake by one of the violinists during a rehearsal of a seventy-member orchestra my confusion could be justified. I believe that Carlos Barbosa-Lima is a genius of transcriptions of Latin American music for guitar.”
Currently Barbosa-Lima records for the Zoho music record label and has released five recordings under this label and the direction of Barbosa-Lima’s recordings as well as his concert programing have a definite Latin American concept. In April, 2010 Barbosa-Lima celebrated the release of his fiftieth recording release, Merengue (Zoho Music, CD 200911) at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall. (wikipedia)
And here is one of his early albums … On the one hand he plays the great concerto by Eduard Grau and then he interprets classical composers like Bach and Mozart alone on the guitar ! An early masterpiece !
Carlos Barbosa-Lima (guitar)
unknown orchestra on 01. – 03.
Concerto em Modo Frígio Para Violão e Orquestra (Grau)
01. Allegro 5.55
02. Adagio quasi largo 5.39
03. Alegro energético 6.07
04. Fuga (Bach) 5.00
05. Variações Sobre Um Tema (Mozart) 9.49
06. Na Ilha Abandonada (Sávio) 3.47