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|Birth name||Sebastião Rodrigues Maia|
|Also known as||Tião
September 28, 1942|
Rio de Janeiro City, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
|Origin||Rio de Janeiro City, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil|
|Died||March 15, 1998
Niterói, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
|Genres||MPB, soul, funk, disco, bossa nova, rock, jazz|
|Occupations||Singer, songwriter, musician|
|Instruments||Vocals, guitar, drums, flute|
|Associated acts||The Sputniks, Roberto Carlos, Erasmo Carlos, Jorge Ben, The Ideals, Eduardo Araújo, Tony Tornado, Cassiano, Hyldon, Vitória Régia|
Tim Maia (Portuguese pronunciation: [tʃĩ majɐ]; September 28, 1942 – March 15, 1998), born Sebastião Rodrigues Maia in Rio de Janeiro, was a worldwide famous Brazilian musician known for his iconoclastic, ironic, outspoken, and polemical (but always humorous) musical style. He was ranked by Rolling Stone as the greatest Brazilian singer of all time, and by the same magazine, the 9th largest Brazilian music artist of all time. He was also known for his habit of lightheartedly missing appointments and even important gigs.
Maia performed in a variety of musical genres, ranging from happy and energetic dance music to sentimental songs such as his hit "Me Dê Motivo". He performed soul, funk, bossa nova, disco, romantic songs, American pop, rock, jazz, baião and MPB. He frequently recorded albums and made tours alongside Banda Vitória Régia.
Maia was born in the Tijuca neighbourhood, in the southern suburbs of Rio de Janeiro. He began writing melodies while still a child, the second youngest of nineteen children.
Maia, then known as "Tião Maia", wrote his earliest songs at age eight. At 14, as a drummer, he formed the group Os Tijucanos do Ritmo, which lasted one year. He then took guitar classes and was soon teaching children in the neighborhood of Tijuca, in Rio de Janeiro, including the Matoso gang (Maia, Jorge Ben, Erasmo Esteves, later Erasmo Carlos, and several others), named after the street where they used to hang out. Maia and his gang liked to hear the earliest styles of rock and roll, with both Maia and Ben being nicknamed "Babulina", after their pronunciation of Ronnie Self's song "Bop-A-Lena". In that period, Maia was the guitar teacher of Esteves and when Roberto Carlos joined the gang in 1958, he also took classes with him.
In 1957, Maia, Carlos, Arlênio Silva, Edson Trindade e Wellington started the vocal group The Sputniks. After a televised appearance on Carlos Imperial's Clube do Rock on TV Tupi, Imperial arranged with Carlos for a solo appearance the following week. Maia got annoyed at this, leading him to insult Carlos in the following rehearsals until his bandmate left the group. After watching Carlos' concert the following week, Maia left The Sputniks, and went after Imperial for a solo appearance. Imperial eventually suggested another artistic name, Tim, which Maia accepted with reservations.
In 1959, Maia went to study in the United States, where he lived for four years. There he first soul music and started as a vocalist, having joined vocal group The Ideals. In 1963, he was arrested for possession of marijuana, and after six months in jail deported back to Brazil.
After returning, Maia had a few unsuccessful jobs and arrests in Rio. Eventually he decided to move to São Paulo to try and get help to kickstart his musical career from Carlos, who was beginning to enjoy the massive success of Jovem Guarda with Esteves. Carlos was inaccessible, but Maia started to perform in São Paulo's nightlife and in Wilson Simonal's radio program, and also had a televised appearance at TV Bandeirantes with Os Mutantes. Eventually at the end of 1967 Maia managed to send a homemade recording to Carlos, who got Maia a deal for a single at CBS and an appearance at the Jovem Guarda TV program. His first single in 1968 with his compositions "Meu País" and "Sentimento", went unnoticed, like was another single in English for RGE Discos, "These Are the Songs"/"What Do You Want to Bet?". Maia also wrote one of Carlos' hits, "Não Vou Ficar". He became more visible after 1969 when he launched his "These Are the Songs," which was re-recorded by Elis Regina in the next year in a duo with Maia. Maia managed a deal with Polydor/Philips and recorded the successful single "Primavera".
In the 1970s, Maia started to record albums and perform shows promoting his synthesis of American soul and Brazilian music with elements of samba and baião. The movement gradually took the working-class suburbs of the north side of Rio de Janeiro, exploding in 1976 with the black movement.
In 1970 Maia recorded his first full-length LP, Tim Maia, which included the classics "Azul da Cor do Mar", "Coroné Antônio Bento", and "Primavera", and topped the charts for 24 weeks in Rio de Janeiro. His first four albums were all self-titled. Next year's Tim Maia had other hits including "Não Quero Dinheiro (Só Quero Amar)" and "Preciso Aprender a Ser Só". His fourth album, released in 1973, included "Réu Confesso" and "Gostava Tanto de Você". Angry at how the music publisher distributed the royalties, Maia opened his own, Seroma (named after the first syllable of his name and surnames), to make sure he had a bigger cut of the profits.
After his fourth album, Maia left Polydor for RCA Victor, who offered him a chance to record a double album. The instrumental parts were all ready when Maia went to his composing friend Tibério Gaspar for help with the lyrics. In his house Maia found the book Universo em Desencanto (Universe in Disenchantment), revolving around the cult of Rational Culture. Maia converted to the cult, abandoned the drugs and red meat, and decided to write the lyrics for the songs about the knowledge contained in the book. RCA rejected the albums Tim Maia Racional, Vols. 1 & 2 for the newly found spiritual content, but Maia bought the master tapes from them and released the albums independently through label Seroma Discos, which would split its profits with the cult. While lead single "Que Beleza (Imunização Racional)" had some airplay, at the time these records were not well received, due to inadequate distribution, and the spiritual content alienating both the radios and Maia's fans. Eventually the artist could only perform at events promoted by the Rational Culture. Eventually in 1975 Maia got fed up with the cult, destroyed the unsold records and went back to his carefree life. The Racional albums are now regarded as classics and saw re-release in 2005.
For his return in 1976, Maia signed with Polygram and recorded an album also titled Tim Maia, which included the hit "Rodésia" (inspired by the Rhodesian Bush War), and also did a self-published album in English. In 1977 Maia signed with Som Livre, where he recorded the album Verão Carioca. In 1978 Maia signed with Warner Bros. Records and incorporated the disco sound of the period in the album Tim Maia Disco Club, which spawned the hits "Sossego" and "Acenda o Farol". In 1979 Maia recorded Reencontro for EMI-Odeon, but revolted at the label's estimated promotion costs which were the same as the money spent recording, Maia fought with the marketing executive, and in response EMI president fired Maia, releasing the album with no publicity to low sales.
1980s and 1990s
In 1980, Maia recorded another self-titled album for Polygram. The following year, with turbulent passages through all the major labels in Brazil, Maia released again through Seroma the album Nuvens, which flopped due to inefficient distribution. To earn cash for his future albums, Maia was a guest in songs by Fevers, Edu Lobo and Chico Buarque, Ivan Lins and Sandra de Sá. His collaboration with Sá, "Vale Tudo", later became a solo hit for Maia. In 1983 he had hits with "O Descobridor dos Sete Mares" and "Me Dê Motivo", included on O Descobridor dos Sete Mares (Polygram). Another milestone of his career in the 1980s was Tim Maia (1986), which had the hit "Do Leme ao Pontal (Tomo Guaraná, Suco de Caju, Goiabada Para Sobremesa)".
In 1990, Maia saw Caetano Veloso's songbook and asked editor Almir Chediak to do one for his own work. Chediak was working on such an album with bossa nova classics, and Maia requested a copy, which eventually inspired him to do a self-released album of bossa nova covers, Tim Maia Interpreta Clássicos da Bossa Nova. After a period of poor presence in the media, he was again on top after being mentioned by Jorge Ben Jor's "W/Brasil" in 1991. In the same period, Maia had another hit with his re-recording of Lulu Santos' "Como uma Onda" for a television advertisement - Santos in return recorded Maia's "Descobridor dos Sete Mares.
At the same time, he withdrew from majors, recording his next albums through Vitória Régia, including What a Wonderful World (1997), where he recorded American pop/soul classics, and Amigos do Rei/Tim Maia e Os Cariocas, with the famous vocal group. Obese and in bad health, in March 1998 he was performing at the Municipal Theater of Niterói when he became ill. He was hospitalized and died few a days later.
Tim Maia had two sons: Carmelo Maia (also known as Telmo, b. 1975) with Geisa Gomes da Silva, and José Carlos da Silva Nogueira (1966-2002). He was also the surrogate father of Geisa's other son, Marcio Leonardo "Léo" Maia (b. 1974). Léo was registered by Tim as his son, although he knew that Léo was not his child, since he met his wife Geisa when she was already pregnant. She had been separated from her boyfriend, who refused to recognize Léo as his child. Tim and Geisa started living together but they broke up after a few arguments. When they made up, she was pregnant with Carmelo. Tim registered Carmelo and married her. When Léo Maia was 12, Tim Maia and Geisa divorced.
Maia lived in the United States of America from 1959 to 1963. He first resided Tarrytown, New York, with the family of an acquaintance of Maia's father's costumer. There he learned English and did not speak much Portuguese because so few Brazilians were living in the USA at the time. In 1961 Maia moved to New York City, and in 1963 with a group of three friends decided to travel to Southern United States. With a stolen car and performing small thefts to finance the journey, which rended him five prisons, Maia and friends travelled through nine states before arriving in Florida. In Daytona Beach, Maia had his final imprisonment for marijuana possession, which earned him the deportation back to Brazil.
Tim Maia became a member of the Brazilian Socialist Party (Partido Socialista Brasileiro - PSB) in October 1997. He was rumoured to have joined the party in order to run for a seat in the Federal Senate for Rio de Janeiro in the 1998 general elections, but died before that. When asked by a reporter why he chose to join the then small PSB, he replied: "Brazil is the only country where – in addition to whores cumming, pimps being jealous and drug dealers being addicted – poor people vote for the right-wing". His phrase would become a famous aphorism on the way Brazilians face politics.
Maia had a tradition of arriving late at concerts, or at times missing them altogether. He also frequently complained about the sound quality in them. Many of his missed concerts were due to what he called "triathlon", consuming whiskey, cocaine and marijuana before the gig. In the end of his life, Maia Tim suffered from many health problems which includes diabetes, acute hypertension, obesity and pulmonary embolism. In 1996, he had a Fournier gangrene solved through an emergency operation.
Legacy and homages
In 1999 he was paid tribute in a show by several Música Popular Brasileira artists. The show was launched on CD and DVD. In 2000 he had another tribute, also released in CD. In 2004, Som Livre released an album of posthumous duets entitled Soul Tim: Duetos.
In 2007, TV Globo recorded a special program about Maia, Por Toda a Minha Vida, and Maia's personal friend Nelson Motta, a noted journalist and musical producer, released a biography, Vale Tudo - O Som e a Fúria de Tim Maia. Motta later worked with João Fonseca on a stage musical based on his book. A film adaptation of the book is expected for 2014.
- 1970: Tim Maia
- 1971: Tim Maia
- 1972: Tim Maia
- 1973: Tim Maia
- 1975: Racional
- 1976: Racional, vol.2
- 1976: Tim Maia
- 1977: Tim Maia
- 1978: Tim Maia Disco Club
- 1978: Tim Maia
- 1979: Reencontro
- 1980: Tim Maia
- 1982: Nuvens
- 1983: O descobridor dos sete mares
- 1984: Sufocante
- 1985: Tim Maia
- 1986: Tim Maia (volume 10)
- 1987: Somos América
- 1988: Carinhos
- 1990: Dance bem
- 1990: Tim Maia interpreta Clássicos da Bossa Nova
- 1991: Sossego
- 1993: Não quero dinheiro
- 1993: Romântico
- 1994: Voltou clarear
- 1995: Tim Maia ao vivo
- 1995: Nova era glacial
- 1997: Pro meu grande amor
- 1997: Sorriso de criança
- 1997: What a Wonderful World
- 1997: Amigos do rei, com Os Cariocas
- 1997: Só você: Para ouvir e dançar
- 1998: Tim Maia ao Vivo II
- Motta, Nelson (2001). Noites Tropicais. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: Objetiva. ISBN 85-7302-292-2.
- Motta, Nelson (2007). Vale Tudo - O som e a fúria de Tim Maia (in pt). Objetiva. pp. 29–32. ISBN 9788573028744. Unknown parameter
- Motta (2007), pp. 54-71
- Motta (2007), pp. 77-79
- Motta (2007), p. 70
- Motta (2007), p. 127-9
- Slater, Russ. "Tim Maia's Journey into Rational Culture" Sounds and Colours, 7 July 2010. Retrieved on 2010-07-2010
- Motta (2007), p. 132-143
- Motta (2007), p. 146-156
- Motta (2007), p. 160-1
- "Tim Maia Disco Club, Tim Maia (WEA)" (0100-7122). Veja (Editora Abril). 2001-11-28.
- Motta (2007), p. 165-7
- Motta (2007), p. 173-5
- Motta (2007), p. 184-189
- Motta (2007), p. 286-9
- Tim Maia morre aos 55 anos, no Rio, Jornal do Commercio
- Polícia começa a investigar assassinato de filho de Tim Maia, O Estado de S. Paulo
- Motta (2007), pp. 127-8
- Motta (2007), pp. 40-51
- (Portuguese) Lucena, Pierre. "Biografia de Tim Maia é o livro mais divertido do ano". Acerto de Contas. December 11, 2007.
- 140 quilos de som e transgressão, Veja
- Motta (2007), pp.364-5
- Silvio Essinger. "Soul Tim Duetos". CliqueMusic.
- Rock In Rio: Guns'N'Roses toca Tim Maia
- Por toda a Minha Vida, Rede Globo
- "Tim Maia - Vale tudo, o musical". O Globo. 2011-08-08.
- Filme sobre Tim Maia sairá em 2014, após atraso na produção, Folha de S. Paulo
- Os bastidores do Som Brasil Tim Maia
- Coleção Tim Maia