Cape Verdean songstress and author Mayra Andrade made a name for herself as a songwriter and performer in her adolescence. By her early twenties she was an established talent, known throughout the Parisian world music scene for her keen writing and adept vocals. Mayra spent her earliest years globetrotting. Born in Cuba, she moved to Senegal, then Angola, followed by Germany, before settling on her parent's native island of Cape Verde. By her early teens Mayra displayed significant talent. Her victory in the songwriting competition at the Francophone Games in Canada at age 16 confirmed her position as a rising star. She performed throughout the Portuguese-speaking world, taking the stage in Praia, Mindelo, and Lisbon. Settling in Paris in 2002, Andrade worked her way up the ladder, performing at acoustic venues in various cities before eventually headlining major festivals. Her reputation earned opportunities to share both stage and studio with established veterans such as Charles Aznavour and Césaria Évora. Andrade released her debut solo record in 2005, entitled Navega. The album, distributed by media giant Sony BMG, enjoyed a lasting presence on World Music Charts Europe, among others. Source: allmusic
Artist Biography by Evan C.Gutierrez
In June 2001, a young Capeverdean singer, hardly 16 years old, completely unknown until then, won a gold medal at the Plays of Francophonie singing contest in Ottawa Hull in Canada among 35 competitors from around world. Mayra Curado Andrade obtained the first Gold medal for her country during an international singing competition.
This event was huge for Cape Verde , since music is one of the principal exported wealth for this small archipelago of ten islands lost in the Atlantic Ocean 500 kilometers of the coasts of Senegal . The young Mayra, who is today the figurehead of the rising generation of singers of her country, was born in Cuba from Capeverdean parents. Mayra lived in Senegal, in Angola, then in Germany.
At 13 years old, she was already noticed for her voice and her personality. She was selected to sing in Belgium during a conference dedicated to Dalaï LAMA’ students. After her victory at the Francophonie in Canada, Mayra did not stop performing. She toured Cape Vearde, in particular at Praia and Mindelo.
Then, in the mythical room the “Coliseu Dos Recreios” in Lisbon , she sang alongside Bau, former instrumentalist of Césaria Evora. It is in July 2002 that Mayra is invited for the very first time in France, to the Festival of Jazz of “Rendezvous de l’Erdre”. On stage, at the sides of two great ladies of the international jazz, the New-Yorker Sheila Jordan and Armenian Datévik Hovanessian, Mayra obtained an enormous success. Source: last.fm