Since arriving in the U.S. in 1980 from his native country Brazil, Cyro Baptista has emerged as one of the premier percussionists in the country. Coinciding with the rise in the public’s interest of world music, Cyro has managed to record and tour with some of music’s most popular names. His mastery of Brazilian percussion and the many instruments he creates himself, have catapulted him into world renown.
With his own project, the percussion and dance ensemble known as 'Beat the Donkey' Cyro gives free reign to his imagination, mixing his tremendous musical skills, his natural humor and theatrical ways with instruments from Brazil, Middle East, Indonesia, Africa and US.
Cyro's credits read like a Who’s Who of modern music. He toured extensively with Yo-Yo Ma's Brazil Project, Trey Anastasio's Band (of Phish), John Zorn's Electric Masada, Herbie Hancock's Grammy award winning Gershwin’s World , Sting and Paul Simon's Rhythm of the Saints.
The wide range of artists Cyro Baptista has performed and recorded with include: David Byrne, Kathleen Battle, Gato Barbieri, Dr. John, Brian Eno, Ryuichi Sakamoto, Robert Palmer, Melissa Etheridge, Laurie Anderson, John Zorn, James Taylor, Carly Simon, Michael Tilson Thomas, Daniel Barenboin, Bobby McFerrin, Wynton Marsalis, Yo-Yo-Ma, Medeski Martin & Wood, Spyro Gyra, Trey Anastasio from Phish, Jay-Z, Snoop Dogg, Santana and Sting. He has also played with many respected Brazilian artists such as Milton Nascimento, Caetano Veloso, Ivan Lins, Marisa Monte, and Nana Vasconcelos.