We pride ourselves at Rhythm Foundation on not canceling shows very often. Many times we have faced terrible weather forecasts and said, let’s get out the tarps. Here is a memory from what is always refered to as ‘the rained out show.’
Putamayo Records put a fantastic double bill on tour in August 2000 – Chico Cesar and singer Rita Ribeiro. The then-newcomers were part of the new guard of great music from Brazil’s Northeast, a cool fusion of forro, frevo, reggae and rock. We were ready for a great night at the North Beach Bandshell, next to the ocean in Miami Beach. At 7PM the wind and rain came whipping through the venue, maybe even a mini-tornado, and came down hard for 20 minutes. The stage was soaked, the instruments would have given anyone an electric shock to touch, and most of the crowd ran home. But not all!
The soaked musicians moved indoors, to the large backstage dressing room, set up a circle of chairs, and began an acoustic singalong groove that lasted for hours. It turned into a beautiful night of music we can still hear in our heads. Luckily, Chico Moura filmed the show for his program on Brasil Teve. The show is also notable for cameos in the audience of some people who would later become very important members of the Rhythm Foundation team! Of course we mean Gene de Souza, who became our development director 3 years later, and his then-girlfriend Vanessa, visiting from Brazil.