Sunday, August 06, 2006


Fon-Fon (Otaviano Romero Monteiro) (1908-1951) was the first in Brazil to have a group with saxophone, trumpet, and trombone sections. In his orchestra he had some of the best musicians of Rio in the '40s according to available info.
Alvaro Neder writes a profile in AMG:
"At ten, he was already a member of a banda de pífanos (traditional northeastern group of rustic flutes) in his city. He began his formal studies of music around 1926. In the next year, he moved to Rio de Janeiro RJ, where he enlisted in the army. There, he joined the regiment's band and improved his saxophone playing with frevo master Garrafinha, the band's counter-master. Soon he was playing in dance bands throughout the city, leaving the army in 1930. With one of those bands, he toured Argentina for a whole year. Returning to Brazil, he joined Romeu Silva's orchestra, soon followed by Sílvio Souza's. In 1939, he tried unsuccessfully to organize his own orchestra. Later, with a new formation, he had his orchestra hired by the Cassino Assírio, with arrangements by Radamés Gnattali. Those were the high times for Fon-Fon e Sua Orquestra. In 1941, he toured with it through Buenos Aires, Argentina, performing at the Radio Splendid. Between 1942 and 1947, the group was most requested as accompanist for Brazil's biggest stars. In 1946, he had a hit with Fon-Fon's choro "Murmurando" (Odeon). In the next year, Fon-Fon e Sua Orquestra was invited by the Club des Champs Elisées and went to Paris, France. After the engagement, continued in Europe where toured through several countries until Fon-Fon's demise in Greece, five years later."
I have found no info available on the recordings by Fon-Fon e Sua Orquestra in the Funarte database of Brazilian recordings.
There is a sample discography in Dicinoráio Cravo Albin, inserted below:
• Cláudio (1932) Columbia 78 • Rato, rato/Deixa por minha conta (1944) Odeon 78 • Turbilhão de beijos/Odeon (1945) Odeon 78 • Um baile em Catumbi/Murmurando (1946) Odeon 78 • Relembrando/Liszamba (1946) Continental 78 • Soluços/Aguenta a mão (1946) Continental 78 • Urubu malandro/Remeleixo (1947) Odeon 78 • Já vai tarde/Você não pensou (1947) Odeon 78 • No meu tempo era assim/É assim que eu gosto (1948) Odeon 78 • Fon-Fon et as musique du Brésil (1950) London LP
If some of the readers of this blog are able to provide further info on the recordings by Fon-Fon, feel free to post a comment. I have not been able to trace items containing re-issue of the listed recordings above, nor does a photo of Fon-Fon and his orchestra seem to be available.


Anonymous Catherine Bent said...

I'm looking for other compositions of Fon Fon besides Murmurando? Can you tell me of others? Thank you!

18 July, 2019  

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