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Line Up

Special guest: John Beasley (keys, producer, arrangements and orchestrations)

Maria Mendes (vocals, compositions and arrangements)

Cedric Hanriot (piano)

Jasper Somsen (acoustic bass)

Jasper van Hulten (drums, percussion)

Download Bios

Listen to CLOSE TO ME on Spotify
Listen to CLOSE TO ME on Soundcloud
Download Technical Rider 5TET (feat John Beasley)
Download Technical Rider 4TET

Press Photos

Live Photos

Press Quotes

“A jazz singer of the highest order. Her poise is as impressive as her power” DOWNBEAT (USA)

“Nothing here disappoints! Graceful vocalist” JAZZTIMES (USA)

“Priming need not be provided to understand the beauty of Close To Me” ALL ABOUT JAZZ (USA)

“Mendes’ voice and improvisation are paramount art ” NRC (Netherlands)

“You hear the merging of Fado in all elegantly swirling notes, while the music gets wings through Mendes’ great sense of timing and well-dosed scat ” DE VOLKSKRANT (Netherlands)

“Mendes immediately profiles herself as a strong jazz singer. Intimacy and beauty from the first track” JAZZISM (Netherlands)
“Portuguese jazz singer Maria Mendes comes up with a Fado album of superlatives” JAZZTHING (Germany)
“Longing, love, nostalgia are the themes, performed with a voice that is unsurpassed in purity and variability” JAZZ ’N’ MORE (Switzerland)
“Crystal clear voice, strong and confident (…) has the courage to make the classic Fado sound absolutely contemporary and of the moment” JAZZVIEWS (UK)
“Mendes is one of the most promising voices of the European jazz scene” CONCERTO MAG (Austria)
“Breathtaking. A dazzling version of a versatile ode to Fado ”  JAZZHALO (Belgium)

Maria Mendes can do the simple perfect: inspiring, ethereal vocal art”  KULTKOMPLOTT (Germany)

“What Mendes express with her voice is art and a real treat for the heart and ears. Impressive!” DRAAI OM JE OREN (Netherlands)

“Her vocalically shows it all, really perfect” JAZZZINE.NL (Netherlands)

“Maria Mendes singing charms anyone” JAZZ À FIT (France)

“Gently beautiful. Excellent album” SERAI MUSIC MAGAZINE (Japan)

5***** O GLOBO (Brazil)

Jazz Legends Quotes

“I see a promising shining future for this young talented singer”

“As Metropole Orkest we are always looking to combine music styles. This project intelligently combines Fado and Jazz in a well-balanced and vibrant manner. John Beasley’s charts are rich and his work on this recording can be compared to that of a great fashion designer. Maria, her incredible voice and her songs are his muse in creating a garment that fits perfectly and makes the Metropole Orkest shine” METROPOLE ORKEST (Netherlands)

“Fado music needs an impressionistic voice that can express the longing and loss in these stories of melancholy. Maria Mendes surprised me with her stunning timbre of voice. She also has the charisma and  personality that is needed to connect the music to the words and  context of the songs. And, with Maria’s soul-reaching voice, which is clear as a bell and can trigger a wide range of feelings, when you listen, you are left with how to handle the beauty and artistry of what you just experienced. With “Close to Me”, you hear two genres –fado and jazz– infusing each other creating a new blend –a new musical appetite that stirs your soul” JOHN BEASLEY (USA)

“Beautiful singing and great scat”

“An album sung from the heart”

“Maria Mendes singing is wonderful”

“I hope her crystal-clear voice and her precise diction will conquer your hearts like it did mine”
DAVID LINX (Belgium)

“Her crystal-clear voice, perfect tuning and smoothness are unique”

Official Videos

Significant awards

EDISON JAZZ Award 2020

GRAMMY Award 2021 *nomination*

LATIN GRAMMY Award 2020 *nomination*

Montreux Jazz Voice Competition Award
(president of the jury was jazz legend Quincy Jones)

Best Improvisation Award at the Jazz Voices International Competition

Best Jazz Vocalist Award at the Jazz Voices International competition

Best Jazz Vocalist Award at the Nederlands Jazz Vocalisten Concours

Relevant shows

De Doelen NETHERLANDS | 2020

Bimhuis NETHERLANDS | 2019

Tivoli Vredenburg NETHERLANDS | 2019

Casa da Música PORTUGAL | 2019

Handelsbeurs BELGIUM | 2018

De Bijloke BELGIUM | 2017

Het Concertgebouw NETHERLANDS | 2017

North Sea Jazz Festival NETHERLANDS | 2016

Sunside Paris FRANCE | 2016

CCB Lisboa PORTUGAL | 2015

Lantaren Venster NETHERLANDS | 2015

Blue Note Jazz Club New York USA | 2014

SESC Pompéia BRASIL | 2013

Off Beat Jazz Festival SWITZERLAND | 2013

Montreux Jazz Festival SWITZERLAND | 2010

Relevant collaborations

Metropole Orkest | Chamber line up on Close to Me project & tour 2019-2021

John Beasley | Arranger, producer, pianist and Metropole Orkest’s conductor for Close to Me project & tour 2019-2021

Teus Nobel | Trumpetist on Dag van de Rotterdamse Jazz project 2018

Brussels Jazz Orchestra | Big Band on De Bijloke project 2017

Andre Ceccareli | Drummer on Innocentia tour 2017

Cedric Hanriot | Pianist on Innocentia tour 2017

Anat Cohen | Clarinetist on Innocentia project 2015

Martin Fondse | Arranger on Innocentia project 2015

Steven Kamperman, Alex Simu & Ricardo Toscano | Clarinetists on Innocentia tour 2015-2018

Wim Dijkgraaf | Harmonica player on Along the Road tour 2012-2014

Maria Mendes

We welcome you to contact Maria Mendes for more information.