Valfrido Silva

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Valfrido Silva was a famous drummer and composer with many successes. He was the first Brazilian popular composer to enjoy an international reputation and was the first drummer to have his name printed…
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Valfrido Silva was a famous drummer and composer with many successes. He was the first Brazilian popular composer to enjoy an international reputation and was the first drummer to have his name printed on a record label ("Preludiando," accompanying Carolina Cardoso de Meneses). At age six, he moved to Niterói with his parents. In 1916, he started to practice the drums with Carlos Eckardt and later with Augusto Lima, both orchestra directors in Niterói. One year later, he opened with the Eckardt's orchestra, accompanying revues, operettas, and playing background music for silent movies. For a considerable period, he played for Eckardt and Augusto Lima. Silva was then hired for the famous Assírio cabaret. He then went to the Beira Mar nightclub, followed by the Dancing Avenida and the Cassino Atlântico orchestra. In 1932, he joined two famous studio groups which recorded for RCA Victor; the Grupo da Guarda Velha and the Diabos do Céu. Both shared virtually the same personnel, but the Guarda Velha had an emphasis on percussion, counting on four rhythm players. With those groups, Silva recorded several albums, with the tracks "Linda Morena," "O Teu Cabelo Não Nega," "A Tua Vida É Um Segredo," "Ride Pagliacci," "Alô, Alô," and others. Taken with Francisco Alves and Mário Reis, he moved to Odeon, where he accompanied Aurora Miranda on "Cidade Maravilhosa."

As a composer, his opening was in blocos de carnaval (Carnival groups). His first recorded composition was "Jurei Me Vingar" (lyrics by André Filho), recorded by Sílvio Caldas in 1932 for Victor. The second was the classic "Vai Haver Barulho No Chatô" (with Noel Rosa), recorded by Mário Reis in 1932. He had great success in 1935 with "Estão Batendo," recorded by Joel e Gaúcho, and "Vou-me Casar No Uruguai," recorded by Almirante. In 1937, he wrote "O Tic-Tac Do Meu Coração," which Carmen Miranda would record for the film Minha Secretária Brasileira (1942), then becoming one of the first Brazilian popular composers to have international projection. As a drummer, he played with Romeu Silva from 1935 to 1944, and from 1944 to 1948, he performed in the Teatro Recreio with the Companhia Valter Pinto.

His first international tour was in 1949 with the Companhia Dercy Gonçalves, in Venezuela. After three months, he left the company with the conductor Vicente Paiva and the Trio de Ouro, touring with them for three months. In 1951, with the Companhia Folclórica Brasileira, José Vasconcelos, and Carlos Galhardo, Silva went to Portugal, were he performed for six months. Upon his return, he was hired by the Companhia César Ladeira-Renata Fronzi for the show Brasil 3000. As a free lancer, he played with uncountable orchestras and groups. As a composer, he had 48 successful creations with the pianist Gadé since 1932, a year in which Jaime Vogeler recorded their samba "Escuta Aqui." With Gadé, he recorded the LP Gafieira (just piano and drums) for Musidisc in 1956.