Roger Thayer Stone Center For Latin American Studies

Tulane University

Geovane Santos

Student - M.A. Candidate

Currently a local presence in the New Orleans music scene, award-winning composer and educator Geovane Paiva Santos, is a native Brazilian from the city of Belo Horizonte. Santos holds a B.M. in Music Performance from the Universidade do Estado de Minas Gerais (UEMG), majoring in both Classical Guitar and Music Education (2011). While still associated with UEMG, Santos received a fellowship from the Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq) to conduct musicological archival research and restoration work of eighteenth and nineteenth-century Minas Gerais’ mestizo classical music, a.k.a Barroco Mineiro (2010-2014). Aligning his academic pursuits with a rising professional music career in jazz and Brazilian popular music in the U.S., Santos went on to receive an M.A. in Jazz Studies from the University of New Orleans (2018). His masters’ thesis entitled ‘€œBossa Nova is not snapped on 2 and 4” was a study of music through a language accent framework where he analyzed and compared celebrated versions of Antonio Carlos Jobim‘€™s composition Chega de Saudade (U.S. and Brazilian charts and recordings) highlighting the ways in which U.S. musicians mistranscribed, mistranslated and erased the Brazilian ‘€œaccent‘€ through Americanization/jazzification/cultural appropriation as they proliferated Jobim‘€™s work around the world. At Tulane University, beyond his enrolment as a Ph.D. student in the Latin American Studies program, Santos is also a community-engaged scholar and a Mellon Foundation fellow. His community-engaged scholarship focuses on developing a project to transcribe New Orleans native, master percussionist, and U.S. Afro-Brazilian cultural ambassador Curtis Pierre’s empirical knowledge into method books to create popular education tools. Santos’ doctoral research aims to expand and further explore his work in music mistranslations through interdisciplinarity, in other words, he is working out methodologies in which song titles, lyrical content, sheet music, and recorded performances can become gateways for critical analysis of symbolic aspects of music that surpass music theory. This way he uses bossa nova songs, and 1950-1960s developmentalist rhetoric as primary sources to discuss race, class, history, imperialism, and cultural appropriation, discussing how Brazil’s marketing and branding bossa nova as a white Brazilian music genre negatively affected how the non-Brazilian world still hears and plays bossa nova today.

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