Carlinhos Brown is the undisputed King of Salvador's Carnival. A composer, percussionist, and artist extrodinaire, his afro-pop sound captures the essence of Bahia. From his work with his Carnival project Timbalada to songs written for numerous other artists, Brown's compositions have won best Carnival song in 1996 (Magarida Perfumada), 1997 (Rapunzel), 1998 (A Latinha), 2003 (Dandalunda), 2004 (Maimbê Dandá); 2009 (Cadê Dalila).

From the neighborhood of Candeal in Salvador, Carlinhos Brown’s first auspicious step onto the national stage was his appearance on Caetano Veloso’s great album, O Estrangeiro. In the early 90s, he organized kids from his neighborhood to form the percussion heavy group, Timbalada. Their first album, Timbalada (1993), was named best record produced in Latin America by Billboard magazine.

Recent Brown projects worth noting include a beautiful MPB album in 2002 with Marissa Monte and Arnaldo Antunes as the group, Tribalistas; a 2005, colloboration with Spain's DJ Dero, Maria Caipirinha, an international hit which served as a spring board to export Carnival to Spain where Brown’s “carnival” party drew over one million people took to the streets of Madrid; and a 2011 project with the great Cuban Band Los Van Van, which culminated with legendary pianist and band leader, Chu Chu Valdez, playing with Brown at Salvador’s Carnival. Here at the beginning of 2012, Carlinhos Brown song Favo de Mel (Real in Rio)," composed for the Disney production, Rio, has been nominated for an Oscar for Best Song 2011.

Carlinhos Brown is a regular at Salvador's Carnival. In the true spirit of Carnival, he is always in search of innovative ways to present his music. He does not abide by the standard "bloco with band for hire" format. Let's see what he has in store for us this year. If you aren't able to catch Carlinhos earlier, you can find him on Wednesday morning around 9am at the lighthouse in Barra where he leads the arrastão, carnival's farewell march to Ondina.

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Carnavalia (w/ Chu Chu Valdez of Los Van Van)

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