Born: September 8, 1977 Primary Instrument: Vocal
Vocalist Maggie Green’s self-titled album of Brazilian music conveys a longing for the endless beaches and samba rhythms of Rio de Janeiro. With her soft yet rhythmic interpretations of bossa nova and samba, sung in masterful Portuguese, the brilliant waters seem but a heartbeat away. This may sound like a stretch for a girl who grew up in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, but for Maggie, it was just a natural progression.
During her early years, Maggie sat at the piano and studied the complex harmonies and melodies of Bach, Mozart and Beethoven. However, while pursuing a degree in classical piano at Michigan State University, her ear began to wander toward jazz music, especially the haunting vocals of Billie Holiday and Chet Baker. This proved to be a significant point, for she not only moved from classical music to jazz, but she also strayed from the piano and focused on her voice. Maggie enrolled at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA.
While at Berklee, Maggie honed her jazz skills and began to delve into Brazilian music. Studying with vocalist Mili Bermejo, she became fascinated with the syncopated rhythms of Brazil. After graduating from Berklee in 2000, Maggie moved to Columbus, Ohio and began establishing herself as a vocal artist. Following a string of performances in the region including the Columbus Arts Festival, the Columbus Jazz and Rib Fest, the Columbus Latino Festival as well as many night club dates, Maggie began to make appearances outside of Ohio, performing at festivals and clubs from Massachusetts to California.
Continually inspired by Brazilian rhythms, Maggie made her first trip to Rio de Janeiro during the summer of 2005. She immediately struck up a musical friendship with pianist Marcos Ariel. The two collaborated on a show, “Rio--New York Connection” featuring NYC saxophonist Joel Frahm, Brazilian drummer Jurim Moreira and bassist Andre Neiva. They played two sold-out shows in front of enthusiastic Rio crowds -- a highlight of Maggie’s career.
Two years later, she returned to Rio and recorded an album of Brazilian music featuring renowned artists Luiz Avellar, Kiko Freitas, Marcos Ariel, Jurim Moreira and others. This recording stands as a testament to her immersion in bossa nova and samba music.
During the fall of 2007, Maggie teamed up with Brazilian guitarist Nelson Faria, drummer Kiko Freitas and American bassist Scott Gold for a series of concerts in the US. The group received rave reviews and standing ovations for their performances in spots like Cleveland’s Nighttown and the Jazz Factory in Louisville, KY. The group gave clinics and concerts at several Ohio universities, exposing the students to South American music.
As an educator, Maggie is currently on the jazz faculty at Otterbein College in Westerville, Ohio. She has also served on the jazz faculty at Capital University. She has also presented vocal workshops at various schools and universities throughout the United States, including the Antonio Adolfo School of Music in Hollywood, Florida. Maggie holds a degree in Professional Music from Berklee College of Music.
Maggie impressed me by having all the attributes that great singers must have for every note of every song - and I am not easily impressed. She is a great singer. --Eddie Felson; Blue Wisp Jazz Club, Cincinnati, Ohio
Maggie Green is a vocalist of distinction. She is a talent to watch. --Jim Wadsworth; Nighttown Jazz Club, Cleveland, Ohio
“In a short period of time she demonstrated what a wonderful educator and great singer she is… her knowledge of vocal technique associated with her talent enchanted everyone.” --Antonio Adolfo; Brazilian musician, composer and educator
She has a smooth-as-silk voice, a dance in her step and a smile on her face. I'm enthralled. --Chad Painter; Other Paper, Columbus, Ohio
“Maggie Green’s music is a blending of cultures and musical styles… something distinctly more than what you would naturally expect. --Scott Adams; The Sounds of Brazil! radio show
Maggie's live shows are always fun, exciting, and original. I am especially fond of her diversity and creativeness. --Steve Gerardi, Clear Channel Entertainment
Her voice, movement, and body language give each song a drive, depth, and richness that is remarkable. --Richard Goldstein; Gold Coast Jazz Society, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
Maggie is currently teaching at Otterbein College in Westerville, Ohio. She has also served on the faculty of Capital University in Bexley, Ohio. She gives workshops and lectures throughout the country, including at Antonio Adolfo's school of music in Hollywood, Florida.