Raul Marques was a sambista in the '30s and '40s, having written a number of sambas which would remain uncredited as his creations, as he used to sell them for peanuts due to poverty. Some of his regular clients were Miguel Baúza and César Brasil, but Carlos Galhardo was also included as a partner for "Baiana Me Dá." Marques became acknowledged as a bamba (samba master) in several different samba schools like the ones in Saúde, Gamboa, Leopoldina, and Morro da Serrinha. Among his compositions, "Risoleta" (with Moacir Bernardino) deserves mention, having first been recorded in 1937 by Luís Barbosa and by many others after that. Other important compositions of his are "Reconciliação" (with Agenor Moreira/José Rosas) and "Retrato do Cabral" (with Monsueto). In the '40s, Marques was a member of Os Ritmistas. As a vocalist, he formed the duo Os Poetas da Voz with Henrique de Almeida and in 1975 worked as a crooner for the Esplanada nightclub (in São Paulo, SP). Composing sambas at a very young age, he began to have success with his songs after he joined a samba group in the neighborhood where he lived, Unidos da Saúde. His first tune to become well-known was "O Amor que Não Morreu" (with Cartola), recorded by Arnaldo Amaral in 1934. After two years, he began to participate in other groups: Vizinha Faladeira, União Barão da Gamboa (around three years), Recreio de Ramos (around three years), and Prazer da Serrinha (two years). In all of them he played all percussion instruments. Very early on he became a professional session musician, employed by Buci Moreira and having recorded for such artists as Noel Rosa, Simon Boutman, and Carmen Miranda. His first hit as a composer was "Eu e Você" (with Ernâni Silva, 1937), recorded by Castro Barbosa. Marques also worked in the cinema, in films by Ademar Gonzaga for Cinédia, having also appeared in Jangada, the unfinished film by Oscar Welles in Brazil.
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