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Ricardo Parreira

(N. 20 April, 1986)

There's a lot to say about his family name. His references are his father, António Parreira, renowned guitarist and teacher at the Guitar School of the Fado Museum, and brother Paulo Parreira, also brilliant in the art of Portuguese guitar and fado. But, according to the words of Ricardo Jorge Marques Proença Parreira Costa, born in Oeiras, it was “in his mother's belly” that he woke up to guitar and fado. Maria José, his mother, was a waitress at Parreirinha de Alfama fado house, owned by Argentina Santos, godmother of young guitarist Ricardo Parreira.

In an interview to the magazine “A Voz de Paço D´Arcos”, Ricardo Parreira recalls: “Of course it was with my father that I started to play with the strings, I was around 5 or 6 years old and I remember putting the video tapes with the recordings of him, whom I listened to and saw again and again, trying to imitate him…. ” Guitar lessons began shortly afterwards, as well as the first forays into fado houses, namely the "Velho Pátio de Santana", a place where father António Parreira played for many years.

With the entry into the National Conservatory to study classical guitar, the first invitations to accompany Argentina Santos in the tribute concerts that took place at the Museu do Fado (1999) and at the Coliseu dos Recreios (2000) started appearing. The following year, a new challenge for the young guitarist: Ricardo Parreira is invited to a solo concert at the Convento de S. Bento de Vitória, part of the “Um Porto de Fado” Festival, which was part of the cultural program of “Porto 2001, Capital of Culture”. At the time, about his musical career, the following words were outlined: “Young and virtuous, Ricardo Parreira sees a bright future as an interpreter and as a living symbol of an old form of urban music that happily insists on live. ” (cf. “Um Porto de Fado”, pp. 21)

In 2005, Ricardo Parreira had already regularly accompanied the fado singers Mafalda Arnauth and Hélder Moutinho. With other fado singers, including Ana Maria, Beatriz da Conceição, Fernanda Maria and Camané, he would perform in concerts, shows, tours.

Ricardo Parreira chooses his masters: predecessors Artur and Carlos Paredes, Armandinho, José Nunes, Francisco Carvalhinho, Jaime Santos, today sources of inspiration for the musical creation and talent of the young guitarist. Two of the Portuguese guitars owned by Ricardo Parreira, having been offered by his father, and belonged to Artur Paredes and Armandinho.

The night of 12 August 2005 was memorable for Ricardo, at Casa da Música, in the city of Porto. Camané was planned  to sing as well as a guitar session, in which Ricardo Parreira was the main player, side by side with Fernando Alvim, viola by Carlos Paredes. This meeting between the two musicians was decisive and “Fernando Alvim did not take long to invite him to practice at his home. The admiration between the two grew, to the point that the guitarist felt the need to honor the master with a tribute ”(cf.“ HM Música ”, Biography of Ricardo Parreira).

The album “Nas Veias de Uma Guitarra” (2007) appears as a recognition and tribute of the young guitarist to the exceptional Alvim. With a repertoire that revisited compositions by Afonso Correia Leite, Armandinho, Artur Paredes, Carlos Paredes, Francisco Carvalhinho, José Nunes and Fernando Alvim, this work “has the taste of joy and the freshness of genius that makes the senses tremble.” (cf. “Actual” magazine, pp. 12). In fact, this record launched Ricardo Parreira for a phenomenon of renewal within fado, which increasingly welcomes and integrates talented and dynamic young artists.

To mark the 10 years of the passing of Amália Rodrigues, the show “Com que Voz” composed by Ricardo Parreira (Portuguese guitar), Marco Oliveira (fado and voice viola) and Micaela Vaz (voice) toured the country, evoking some of the most striking and significant themes from Amália Rodrigues' repertoire.

Within the scope of “Festas de Lisboa 2009”, and integrated in the “Festa do Fado” program, Ricardo Parreira performed at the Fado Museum for a unique cycle entitled “Pôr-do-Fado” in which he shared the sound of the Portuguese guitar with the percussion of António Teles (Quiné).

2010 was the year his album "Cancionário" was released. There he creates the perfect symbiosis between fado and traditional and popular Portuguese music. Ricardo was inspired by the ethnographic research of Michel Giacometti and José Alberto Sardinha to find the ideal repertoire, as well as some completely original compositions.

In 2016, Ricardo joins his father, António, and brother Paulo to create the album "Guitarra Portuguesa", a brilliant project with recreations of great classics and original themes.



“The Voice of Paço de Arcos”, nº 143, 2nd Series - February / March 2005

Carita, Alexandra and Jorge Simão (2006), “Fados Nosso”, Lisbon, Aletheia Editores

“Actual”, magazine of the newspaper “Expresso”, April 6, 2007


Ricardo Parreira

Ricardo Parreira, Cuca Roseta

  • Divertimento Ricardo Parreira (Carlos Paredes)