Sandra Pinheiro Pacheco
Sandra Pinheiro Pacheco was born in Pawtucket, Rhode Island to Portuguese immigrants of the Azorean island, Faial. She loved singing as a child and claims to have inherited her father’s genes. He was a well-known singer in Faial for the “bailes.” She started singing on stage when she was a sophomore at San Jose High School. She joined the school choir and became the lead Soprano. She was fortunate enough to take Portuguese there and was one of the few early participants in the International Baccalaureate program. She graduated from San Jose State University with a Major in Business Administration and a minor in Portuguese. She has been singing ever since. She’s participated in church choirs, dancas de carnaval, she sang at her High School graduation, she’s sung at weddings (her own included) and funerals.
Manuel Escobar, who’d heard her sing numerous times, approached her and encouraged her to consider Fado. She knew a little about Fado since she studied about Amalia Rodrigues in Portuguese class. She never dreamed that she’d actually enjoy singing it. On March 14, 2003 Sandra had her first Fado performance in Santa Clara and since then she’s been hooked. She is extremely fortunate to be among the many Fado singers performing with the 7 Colinas. “Stellar musicians make for stellar performances,” she says. She’s had the honor of singing with many prestigious Fado singers including: David Silveira Garcia, Angela Brito, Zelia Freitas, Jesualda Azevedo, Paulo Filipe, Avelino Teixeira, Ze Duarte, Chico Avila, Isalino dos Santos, Lorraine Jacinto, Marylou Lawrence, Max Gracio, Crystal Mendes, George Costa Jr. and Liliana. Pin
The passing of her father is what inspires Sandra to continue singing the Fado. Many of the fado songs carry such depth and sentiment that allow her to express her “saudade” of him. Her only wish would be to have him see her perform the Fado at least once, he would be proud.
David Silveira Garcia
David was born December 7th, 1980 in San Jose, California to two adoring immigrant parents from the village of Madalena on the island of Pico in the Azores, Rosa Maria and António Garcia. Seeing as how David’s parents had only been in the U.S. for six years, David was raised in the true, old-fashioned Portuguese way, only speaking Portuguese and listening to all genres of Portuguese music.
He attended private Catholic school at Five Wounds from Kindergarten through 8th grade where he graduated in 1995. He then went on to attend his four years of high school at San Jose High Academy, where he was enrolled in their International Baccalaureate Program for Portuguese Studies. He then received his certificate in the language when he graduated in June of 1999.
At a young age, David developed a love of music, whether it was singing or playing. In 1993, David began learning the Alto Sax, and only in a few months, was ready to play for the Portuguese Band of San Jose, where he played for fourteen years. Within those fourteen years, he played the Alto Sax, the Tenor Sax, the Baritone Sax, and the Bass Drum when needed. In 1997, he became the band’s Assistant Conductor, having also served as president of the organization from 2002-2003.
David began playing the mandolin in the mid 90’s, having been taught the scale by his great-uncle, Luis Garcia da Rosa, who was a well know mandolin player, poet, and writer, both in the Azores and in the Portuguese community of San Jose. David joined a Portuguese dance group, Grupo Típico, where he played mandolin for about five years. At that young age, he assisted in teaching the mandolin to other Luso-descendant children who were also in the dance group. After the extinction of the group, David later joined Grupo Folclórico Tempos de Outrora in 2004, a world-renowned Azorean folklore group, where he plays the mandolin and sings as well. He has traveled to Hawaii, Canada, Azores, and Brazil teaching the Azorean traditions through dance and song with this group. He is currently the president and has high expectations and plans for the future of this group.
In 2001, David became very involved with Carnaval dances, one of the most popular traditions from the island of Terceira in the Azores, which has now become extremely popular on all the islands, and in any area of the world where there are Azoreans. David joined the Carnaval group Grupo de Danças de Carnaval da Banda Portuguesa de São José and played several roles in dramatic and comedic skits. He is still often referred to as some of the characters he has played, most particularly the roles of a Bishop, Miss California, and Mother Superior. He has been lucky enough to travel to Canada and the East Coast twice with this group, and actually spend Carnaval Weekend in Terceira as well.
For the past several years, Manuel Escobar, a musician of 7 Colinas, had heard David sing several times in the folklore group and Carnaval group. Mr. Escobar had been encouraging David to pursue Fado. Since he was so active and involved in the community, David’s time was limited, and he was afraid of committing and not being able to keep up with everything. In April of 2009 dear friends, Hélio Beirão and his wife Maria das Dores, asked for David’s assistance in putting together a variety show for a fundraiser gala dinner for POSSO in San Jose. This program consisted of community youth members singing and playing traditional folklore songs with a classical twist. It was such a success that this group was invited to perform twice more that year, and is preparing future events as well. This was the first time David would sing solo on a stage, and was his first step to heading towards Fado.
After hearing David perform with Hélio Beirão, it was only a matter of days before the group 7 Colinas began rehearsing with him. Even as a child, when he began to listen to Fado, David always imagined setting foot in the world as Fadista one day. He idolizes fadistas like Carlos Macedo, Fernando Farinha, Carlos do Carmo, Amália Rodrigues, Mariza, and many others.
Helder Carvalheira, Manuel Escobar, and João Cardadeiro from 7 Colinas have been the backbone for David’s journey into the Fado world. Their constructive criticism, advice, and support have led David to a new chapter in his life, and having had a family filled with poets and musicians, it’s no surprise that David is now a Fadista.
In June of 2012, David released his first CD "Fados d'Alma Lusa". Each Fado in this collection was carefully chosen to expose David's deepest passions, with gratitude to a higher divine power, the sharing of a love story, and pride in the Portuguese people. His CD has reached the four corners of the globe playing on various radio stations in the US, Canada, Australia, Brasil, France, Angola, and even on Radio Amalia in Lisbon, Portugal.
David was invited by the Portuguese General Consulate of San Francisco to attend and represent Northern California at the World Training Course of Associative Leaders of the Diaspora held in Lisbon in February of 2013. While in Lisbon, David was privileged to sing to some of the dignitaries of the Portuguese Government as well as sing at several Fado houses where he met and sang alongside a few well known Fadistas like Celeste Rodrigues, Jorge Fernando, Pedro Moutinho, Joana Amendoeira, and Carlos Macedo, among many others.
Singing Fado is yet another footstep on David’s path, and he hopes to share his singing with all communities, so others can experience the beauty and emotions Fado has to offer.
Manuel Leite - Portuguese guitar
Manuel Escobar - viola de fado
Joao Cardadeiro - viola de fado
Fado is the national song of Portugal. The fado is intimately intertwined with Portuguese food, wine, and culture. Fado expresses and conveys - in the international language of music - the emotions of love, joy, sadness, pain, passion loss, and hope. To truly understand Portuguese culture one needs to experience "Uma Noite do Fado" (A Night of Fado).
The fado is traditionally performed in the fado clubs of the ancient Alfama and Barrio Alto districts of Lisboa (Lisbon) in small wine cellars, which venues provide excellent sound dynamics for the acoustically-performed art form. We are extremely fortunate to be able to present and recreate this "Clube do Fado" ambience in Sausalito, in the wine cellar of the beautiful The Pines mansion, originally built in 1888, and painstakingly remodeled and restored to its former glory. This venue will truly recreate a transportive experience of being in a Clube do Fado in the Alfama or Barrio Alto districts of Lisboa, in our very own Sausalito.