In the northeastern Brazilian city of Salvador, Carnaval is quite different from what goes on in Rio de Janeiro. Instead of samba schools parading through the night with drums, high-tech floats and scantily dressed dancers, a bevy of trios elétricos – large trucks equipped with a stage, amplifiers and large loudspeakers — go through the city's streets as revelers dance behind them during the four days of debauchery that come before the period of Lent in the Roman Catholic calendar. Invented in the 1950s by late longtime friends Osmar Álvares Macêdo and Dodô Nascimento, the trios elétricos are now all over Brazil, but nothing compares to the original band, now led by Osmar's son Armandinho, an incredibly talented guitarist in his own right. For their first visit to Houston, the band won't be playing on a truck, but will certainly bring the energy of their uptempo Bahian music, which blends elements of samba, the fast-paced frevo and the Afro-Brazilian beat of Axé. The tunes run the gamut from traditional to Ravel's Boléro, allowing Armandinho to show off his classically trained chops.
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