Z Ketti, was without a doubt one of the most brilliant Brazilian music samba composers
of the 20th century.
He had hundreds of songs recorded by Brazilian artists appeared in several feature movies,
participated in one of the most important musical production ever made in Brazil, the play
His songs always talked about the life of the Afro Brazilian people, their feelings, struggles
culture, and social problems. (prejudice, poverty, etc..)

"Why Z Ketti?
Because my mother was left alone to raise me, and she had to work as a maid, and couldn't
bring children to her jobs. So I stayed in the house of relatives. I stayed by the window
watching the other kids play, and I would fly a kite from the window. Then my mother would
come back and my relatives would tell her- 'Z was really quite! (quieto, in Portuguese)
Oh, how that Z is quite! Look at how quite Z is, Z quiet... and it ended up Z Ketti.
The k in Ketti, is because it was giving good luck, Kubitscheck, Kruchov, Kennedy.
But now, I think my good luck is gone." -Z Ketti

Rio de janeiro, september 16 of 1921, in the city of Inhauma, the boy Jos Flores de Jesus,
or better yet Z Ketti was being born for the happiness of his father, a sailor who played the

Taken by Geraldo Cunha, composer and partner of Carlos Cacha, Z was introduced in the
G.R.E.S. Estao Primeira de Mangueira, at the age of 13, having then the first contact with the
music made in Mangueira and started to frequently go to rehersals of the prestigious Samba School.
He then moved from Piedade to Bento Ribeiro and consequently started to hang out at
Portela Samba school taken by the composer and at the time, president of the school (Portela),
Armando Santos. He then started to participate in the parades in the composer's section,
he also started to write his firat sambas which he wouldn't share with anyone, only doing so at
the age of 17, when he became part of the scene at the "Caf Nicei", a bohemian redoubt in the
downtown area of Rio de Janeiro.

From 1940 to 1943, Z Ketti was forced to be away from the musical environment due to be
serving as a soldier in the Military Police Corporation.

Being a soldier was one of the professions of the composer who liked soccer, father of
"many children" and who enjoys to fish for crabs. Z Ketti worked also as a grafter, a shoe
repairman, a manson, and a street sweeper.

In 1946, Z Ketti had , for the first time, the happiness of having one of his sambas recorded.
That samba was "Tio Sam no Samba", which he wrote with Felisterto Martins, recorded by the
group "Vocalistas Tropicais." In the same year, singer Ciro Monterio recorded for the carnival
"Vivo Bem" which was written with Ari Monteiro.

In the 50's Linda batista recorded "Amor Passageiro", and oJamel recorded "Leviana".
In 1954, he disassociated himself from Portela due to accusations in which the authenticity
of his compositions were doubted, that made him transfer himself to "Unio Vaz Lobo".
There it was released "A Voz do Morro", recorded in 1955 by Jorge Goulart.
This samba gave Z Ketti the award of the most popular song of 1956 Carnival.

In 1958, brazilian movie director Nelson Pereira dos Santos, used Z Ketti's sambas in the
soundtrack of his movie "Rio 40 graus" - "Leviana" and "A Voz do Morro", and also other
songs in the movie "Rio Zona Norte" by the same director, in which he participated also as actor

In 1960 he returned to Portela and participated in the musical activities of the "Zicartola
Restaurant", introducing old composers, who were still unknown by the public like
Cartola, Nelson Cavaquinho, and new ones like Paulinho da Viola, Elton Medeiros...

He conceptualized and recorded two LPs with a musical group called "A Voz do Morro", which
its main intention was to defend the authentic samba. Besides Z Ketti, the group consisted
of Anescar do Salgueiro, Paulinho da Viola, Nelson Sargento, Elton Medeiros, Jair do Cavaquinho,
among others. Authentic samba.

In 1964, the year of the military revolution in Brazil and of the dictatorship which lasted for 20
years, Z Ketti opened the show "Opinio", with Joo do Vale, a composer from Maranho, and
singer and bossa nova's muse Nara Leo. The show was directed by Augusto Boal and
musically directed by Dori Caymmi. It was the union between the street of the rich zone
of Rio de Janeiro (Nara Leo) with the slums (Z Ketti) and the country rhythms of the north
(Joo do Vale).

During the 70's, 80's and 90's Z Ketti was forgotten by Brazilian music industry, midia,
and promoters. He kept composing and appearing at small venues in SoPaulo and Rio.

Z Ketti died in 1999 in poverty.

Listen to some samples of the wonderful Z Ketti sung by himself.

All samples in Real Audio

Madrugada - Z Ketti

Leviana - Z Ketti

Acender as velas - Z Ketti

Meu pecado - Z Ketti

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Women Afro Brazilian Connection Images of Brazilian Music 20 Exemplary cases Images of Brazil

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