Bosco De Oliveira [vocals, pandeiro]
Xavier Osmir [vocals, repique de mão]
Barak Schmool [sax, tantã]
Roberto Castellarin [vocals, guitar]
John Harborne [cavaquinho]
Grupo Sambando was formed in late 2000 to perform Pagode and Choro - two genres of Samba that are rarely heard live in the UK. Pagode is the name for the Samba revival movement that began in Rio de Janeiro in the 1970s. It started at the Cacique de Ramos in northern Rio and was spearheaded by Grupo Fundo de Quintal. In the last twenty years Pagode has become very popular in Brazil and there are now hundreds of bands on the scene. Choro (or Chorinho) is the instrumental form of Samba, which had its heyday in the early twentieth century. It is still popular in Brazil and performers are greatly valued for their virtuosity. The band consists of three Brazilians and two Brits.
Bosco de Oliveira is the godfather of the British Samba scene (having started the London School of Samba), a consumate artist, samba historian, teacher and long established beacon of the UK's Latin circuit. He is currently working with Terry Callier and his own group Arakatuba. Having hit the headlines with Working Week in the 80's, he has played with Airto, Flora Purim, Paulo Moura and many other Brazilian superstars and, closer to home, everyone from King Salsa to Kate Bush!
Singer and composer Xavier Osmir has come from Saõ Paulo's Vai-Vai Samba School. In London he is the most authentic voice of samba singing for Rhythms of the City, London School of Samba, Uniao da Mocidade, Bloco Ere, Viramundo and his own outfit Pagoge pra Valer.
Roberto Castellarin is a composer from Porto Alegre in the south of Brazil. He works as a teacher and performer of many styles of Brazilan music with Pagoge pra Valer and Som Brazil.
John Harborne was a trombonist in Loose Tubes who now divides his time between Brazil and the UK. He has been concentrating on cavaquinho playing chorinho, the samba-jazz form that has fascinated him for a long time. On trombone, he has performed with Synergy, Ska Cubano and various salsa bands though he devotes much more time to Brazilian music with Rhythms of the City, Uniao da Mociade, Viramundo etc.