(Rio de Janeiro, February 14, 1923 - Rio de Janeiro, November 3, 2012)

            Born in Bangu, in the western part of the city, daughter of northeastern Brazil, Carmélia Alves Curvello was raised in Areal, Petrópolis. When he was five years old, he liked to hear his father hum and tell stories about his Ceará.

In 1940, he returned to Rio and began to attend freshman programs, when he imitated Carmen Miranda, his idol. When making a success in the program of auditorium of the singer Barbosa Júnior, in the National Radio, was by this one indicated to appear in the famous Program Casé, accompanied by the Regional of Carmen Miranda (that was already in the United States). Thus, if professionalized definitively, contracted by Radio Mayrink Veiga, where it remained during two years. He sang as a "crooner" (alongside Nelson Gonçalves, Ciro Monteiro, and others) at the Copacabana Palace nightclub with orchestras led by famous maestros like Simon Boutman, Fon-Fon, and Benedito Lacerda Regional. At that time he met the São Paulo native José Andrade Nascimento Ramos (an interpreter of American songs, known as Jimmy Lester), with whom he married. Through his friend Benedito Lacerda, recorded on his first album 78 rpm (RCA Victor label, 1943) sambas Leti de Sofrer (Horondino Silva, Popeye do Pandeiro) and Who Sleeps At the Point Is Chofer (Assis Valente).

During World War II, she preferred to tour with her husband in Brazil for four years. He returned to the phonographic market (Continental label, 1949), in a duo with Ivon Curi, including Tada Me Leva (Hervê Cordovil, Rochinha) and Gauchita rancher (Luiz Gonzaga, Humberto Teixeira), when the miner Hervê, the Pernambuco Gonzaga Cearense Teixeira became a landmark in his splendid career. And in the 50's, besides acting in the cast of Rádio Nacional, he started a series of hits (78 rpm, Continental), such as Goodbye Goodbye Morena (Hervê Cordovil, Manezinho Araújo), Serenou Night (Hervê Cordovil), Eu Sou O Baião (Humberto Teixeira), Heart Magoado (Roberto Martins), Jeca Tristeza (Angelino de Oliveira), and others.

In 1954, the first LP appeared The Queen of Baião (seal Cantagalo): Goodbye Maria Fulô (Humberto Teixeira, Sivuca), Last Pau de Arara (Venâncio, Corumba, José Guimarães), Xaxado (Luiz Gonzaga, Hervê Cordovil), Qui Nem Jiló (Luiz Gonzaga, Humberto Teixeira). In the following year, on the Continental label, the album Baião with Carmélia Alves, compilation of hits in 78 rpm: Sabiá Lá Na Cage (Hervê Cordovil, Mário Vieira), Inchada Hervê (Hervê Cordovil), Quia de Bico Clay). In the cinema, he worked in musical numbers of several films: Tudo Azul (by Moacyr Fenelon, 1951), Needle in the Palheiro (Alex Viany, 1952), Carnival In Caxias (Paulo Vanderley, 1953), Is With Everything (Luiz de Barros, 1953 ), Carnival In A Major (Adhemar Gonzaga, 1955), Worked Well, Genival (Luiz de Barros, 1955), The Pension of Dona Estela (Alfredo Palacios and Ferenc Fekete, 1956). In that year, he released on the Copacabana label the Carmélia Alves LPs, with repertoire dedicated only to the duo Luiz Gonzaga / Humberto Teixeira: Paraíba, Asa Branca, Juazeiro, Assum Preto, and Hervê Cordovil Performed by Carmélia Alves, : It has Feather of Me, Can Stay (with Vicente Leporace), Rain (with Armando Rosa), There is No End (with brother René Cordovil). In recording the notable album "Nossa Carmélia Alves" (Polydor, 1959), she showed all her versatilities in popular classics such as: My House (Joubert de Carvalho), Heart (Sinval Silva), Her Hands (Pernambuco, Antônio Maria), Cajueiro Doce Manezinho Araújo, Antônio Maria), and others. As a consecrated singer, in the 50's, Carmélia Alves performed in Argentina, in many European countries such as Germany, Portugal and in the former Soviet Union, with great repercussion.

In 1964, he added another pearl in his Bossa Nova discography with Carmélia Alves (Mocambo label): Who Wants to Find Love (Carlos Lyra, Geraldo Vandré), Samba de Una Nota Só (Tom Jobim, Newton Mendonça), Waltz of a City Ismael Netto, Antônio Maria), O Barquinho (Roberto Menescal, Ronaldo Bôscoli). In 1969, by the label Chantecler was published the historical LP Sambas Enredo of the Schools of Samba de São Paulo - Carmélia Alves & Geraldo Filme, in which in solo interventions, recorded: History of the Green House (Narciso Lobo, Geraldo Filme - ES Unidos do Peruche ), Industrial Progress (Dock - First of Saint Stephen), United Quarry (Hervê Cordovil), Four Love Stories (Xangô, Bob Junior - ES Morro de Vila Maria).

In 1974, the album Ritmos do Brasil was released with Carmélia Alves (RGE), in busy and immersive tracks: Frevorosamente (Nelson Sampaio), I Picked A Ita in the North (Dorival Caymmi), Chora Viola (Venâncio, Corumba), Ao Som do Carimbó (Nelson Sampaio, Valéria Ramos). Luiz Gonzaga & Carmélia Alves (RCA, 1977), in a memorable show, in duo: Reis do Baião (Luiz Gonzaga, Luiz Bandeira), Lorota Boa (Luiz Gonzaga , Humberto Teixeira), Forró de Mané Vito (Luiz Gonzaga, Zé Dantas). In the 90's, together with Ellen de Lima, Nora Ney, Rosita Gonzales, Violeta Cavalcanti, Zezé Gonzaga, recorded The Eternal Singers of the Radio (CID label, 1991 and 1992), when she performed old hits and in 1999 Along with Ademilde Fonseca, Ellen de Lima, Violeta Cavalcanti (Leblon Records), in which he presented Boy de Braçanã (Luiz Vieira, Arnaldo Passos), alongside Ney Matogrosso. In that same year, she released Carmélia Alves, Abraça Jackson do Pandeiro and Gordurinha (seal CPC-UMES), with the participation of Inezita Barroso in Baião (Luiz Gonzaga, Humberto Teixeira), Luiz Vieira in Forró Em Caruaru (Zé Dantas), Elymar Santos In Súplica Cearense (Gordurinha, Nelinho). His last performance was accompanied by Carminha Mascarenhas, Ellen de Lima, Violeta Cavalcanti on show Estão Voltando As Flores (by Ricardo Cravo Albin) recorded live at the Teatro de Arena / Rio (Som Livre label, 2002).

Since 2010, the singer has lived in Retiro dos Artistas, where she died due to multiple organ failure. Carmélia Alves, a peculiar voice, with a breixo style, unmistakable rhythm, spread the northeastern culture, sang sambas, choros, carnival marches, boleros, samba-songs, always with great competence, joy and passion.

© Copyright 2008 - Pelo Telefone: A trip through Popular Brazilian Music.

Development and Design: Marcio Cunha