Having written the samba-enredo that gave to Portela the Carnival championship of 1953, Casquinha also had success with sambas like "Vem, Amor," recorded in the same year by Avelino da Portela, and "Recado" (written with Paulinho da Viola), recorded by A Voz do Morro in 1965. Three years later, Paulinho da Viola recorded his samba "Maria Sambamba." Casquinha also had songs recorded by João Nogueira and Beth Carvalho ("A Chuva Cai," "Gorgear da Passarada"), Clara Nunes ("Outro Recado"), and Zeca Pagodinho ("Coroa Avançada"), among others.
Frequenting rodas de samba (samba get-togethers) beginning as a child in the working-class suburb of Oswaldo Cruz (Rio de Janeiro), Casquinha also became a regular at Portela. He became a member of Portela's prestigious Ala dos Compositores (Composers' Wing) in 1956, invited by Candeia, with whom he had written his first song, "Indecisão." In 1953, Casquinha's "Vem, Amor" was recorded by Avelino da Portela. In the same year, Portela won the annual Carnival contest with his samba "Brasil, Pantheon de Glória" (with Candeia/Valdir 59/Bubu/Altair Prego). Paulinho da Viola's first partner at Portela was Casquinha, with "Recado." Ten years later, with Candeia and Picolino, Casquinha formed the group Os Mensageiros do Samba, connected to the cultural and political organizations Centro de Cultura Popular (CPC, or Popular Culture Center) and União Nacional dos Estudantes (UNE, or National Coalition of Students). The group recorded his "Se Eu Conseguir" (with Picolino) on the LP Mensageiros do Samba. In 1971, Casquinha participated in the historic rodas de samba at the Opinião theater (Rio de Janeiro). In the next year, João Nogueira re-recorded "Maria Sambamba." In 1973, Casquinha formed the group Tio Samba. The LP História das Escolas de Samba: Portela (Marcus Pereira) had Casquinha interpreting his "Recado." His hit "Preta Aloirada" was recorded by himself, together with other originals, in 1975, on the LP Partido em Cinco. Paulinho da Viola recorded his "Mudei de Opinião" (with Bubu) in 1978. In the 1980s, Beth Carvalho recorded one of his biggest hits, "A Chuva Cai Lá Fora" (with Argemiro). In 1996, Paulinho da Viola recorded "O Ideal É Competir" (with Candeia). Commemorating 30 years as a member of the Velha Guarda da Portela in 2000, Casquinha had in that year his samba "Meu Bairro" recorded by Marquinhos de Oswaldo Cruz on his Uma Geografia Popular. Casquinha's first solo album was the CD Casquinha da Portela, also launched in 2000, having as special guests the Velha Guarda da Portela and Aldir Blanc (in a duet on "Recado"). In 2001, together with Dauro do Salgueiro, Nelson Sargento, Dona Ivone Lara, Baianinho, Niltinho Tristeza, Nei Lopes, Zé Luiz, Nilton Campolino, Jair do Cavaquinho, Monarco, Elton Medeiros, Luiz Grande, Jurandir da Mangueira, and Aluízio Machado, Casquinha participated in the show Meninos do Rio at the Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil (Bank of Brazil Cultural Center, Rio de Janeiro).