19 February, 2020

Joel Pina is 100 years old!


100 years! Congratulations, dear professor Joel Pina!

100 years ago, in Rosmaninhal (Idanha-a-Nova), the man who would be responsible for the introduction of the bass guitar in the accompaniment of Fado was born.

Self-taught musician, he arrived in Lisbon at the age of 18 and started to visit Café Luso. It was there that he met Martinho da Assunção who invited him, in 1949, to join the Typical Guitar Quartet Martinho de Assunção.

In the following year he was invited to the permanent cast of Adega Machado, where for the next ten years he affirmed the bass guitar in the accompaniment of fado, which was not usual until then.

He was the founder of the Raul Nery Guitar Ensemble with the guitarists Fontes Rocha and Júlio Gomes. He accompanied Amália Rodrigues for three decades and, with her, he toured the stages from around the world, in countless shows and tours that passed, for example, through Canada, the United States and Brazil (several times), Chile, Argentina, Mexico, England, France, Italy (several times), Russia, five times to Japan, Australia, South Africa, Angola, Mozambique, Macau, South Korea.

Joel Pina's vast career makes the task of enumerating the fadistas with whom he played and continues to accompany, almost impossible. In addition to the aforementioned Amália Rodrigues and Maria Teresa de Noronha, he is also present in the recording of albums and shows by fadistas such as Carlos do Carmo, Carlos Zel, João Braga, Fernando Farinha, Nuno da Câmara Pereira, João Ferreira-Rosa, Teresa Silva Carvalho, Fernanda Maria, Celeste Rodrigues, Carlos Ramos, Lenita Gentil, Rodrigo and, more recently, Cristina Branco, Joana Amendoeira or Ricardo Ribeiro.

After more than six decades of fado, Joel Pina continues to “accompany, give “ground”, give the base to whoever is singing” (Joel Pina, 2006) and there is no doubt about that the significant role he developed for the bass guitar was, as it is today, an integral part of the instrumental basis of the musical universe of fado.


Many, many congratulations, Professor!