Nuno Mindelis (BR)
Born in Cabinda (Angola) on Aug. 7, 1957, Nuno Mindelis became a guitar enthusiast at the very young age of 5. By the age of 9 he began building and playing self-made guitars.
A primary influence at that time was Otis Redding and his great rhythm section, Booker T. & The MG’s, made up of Booker T., Steve Cropper, Donald “Duck” Dunn, and Al Jackson. Nuno continues to enjoy the work of these musicians to this day.
Because of a civil war, which made Nuno lose everything he had, he was forced to leave his country as an exiled at the age of seventeen. He joined an older cousin in Canada.
He remained there for about a year, jamming where possible and increasing his guitar knowledge. In 1976, following a year of separation from his family, he decided to rejoin them in their newfound home of Brazil.
Nothing eventful happened until 1990, when an independent recording he had made there began to receive airplay on local radio stations. In 1991 he was invited to record his debut solo album, “Blues & Derivados”, which received very positive reviews in Brazilian media.
He records his second solo album, “Long Distance Blues” for “Movieplay Records”, joined by Larry McCray and French harp player J.J. Milteau, considered as the best Harp Player in France and one of the most important in Europe. The album received rave reviews from Brazilian media. As part of his promotional tour for the album, Nuno was fortunate to gain a spot in a blues festival in Sao Paulo featuring Robert Cray, Otis Clay, Ronnie Earl, Lonnie Brooks, and Bo Diddley.
First known recognition by a major American music magazine. “Guitar Player Magazine” profiled Nuno in an issue. In the article, Jas Obrecht (the editor at the time) compared Nuno to Jimmy Page. (“think Jimmy Page I can’t quit you baby”). Further recognition came in their May, 1998 issue, as Nuno was selected as “Best Blues Guitarist” in the 30th Anniversary Guitar Player Magazine Competition
In 1995 Nuno was invited to play at Antone’s 20th Anniversary in Austin, Texas, opening for Guy Forsite, Junior Wells, and others. Clarence Gatemouth Brown and Storyville also performed at this event. The headlines of the Austin Blues newspaper warned of Nuno’s forthcoming visit as “The South American Beast is coming!”.
Later that year Nuno would record his album “Texas Bound”, featuring newly made friends Tommy Shannon & Chris Layton, Stevie Ray Vaughan’s rhythm section supreme, “Double Trouble”.With this album Nuno gained audiences in the entire world, from Brasil to the US and Europe. Texas Bound came to be the 12nd top seller in Benelux (Belgium, Netherlands and Luxemburg) sharing the shelfs with the world’s biggest blues names ,BB King, Robert Cray , Buddy Guy.
1999 / 2000 / 2003
In 1999 Nuno released “Blues On The Outside”, again with double Trouble, and tours with this superb rhythm section to release the album. Again, rave reviews from the media.Blues on The Outside’s first track (The Grass is greener) was the top chart in all Internet blues radio stations according to Live 365 (24 hours radio monitoring). A canadian promoter and record company executive heard the record and invited Nuno for the 25th edition of the Montreal International Jazz Festival in 2001, followed by other presentations in Quebec , Ottawa . He was considered by the critic as the best blues guitar player of the festival and his presentation one of the best of the latest editions of the festival.
Nuno was once again invited in 2004 , after the release of his album Twelve Hours and again played Quebec and Ottawa and also the Montremblant Blues Festival, announced along with Keb Mo, Jimmy Vaughan and others.
The reviews on Twelve Hours were so many and so praising that we may just mention a reviewer’s question in one of them : “Is the new King of the blues a man based in Brazil?” (Andy Grieg,Realblues Magazine – Canada) .
In 2005 , Nuno did an album especially dedicated for Brazil. All the songs were sang in portuguese and Nuno officially showed his poetical skills for the first time, highlighting the songwriting and the fusion with other musical elements (rap,hip hop,even samba) rather than his usual guitar playing. The album received very good reviews from the main newspapers and magazines in Brazil and was considered one of year’s best album by prominent brazilian critic Pedro Alexandre Sanches.
2010 / 2013
In 2010, Nuno released Free Blues, an attempt to modernize the blues language,by fusing some blues and rock songs that had great influence in his music when still a Kid (from Muddy Waters’s All Your Love to Dave Mason’s feeling Alright ) with contemporary elements. Free Blues received good reviews from important newspapers and magazines. Carol Borrington, Blues Matters Magazine-UK wrote: “In this Cd you will find some of the best blues guitaring around” .
In 2013 – Invited to join the cast of great guitar player and producer Duke Robillard and Jesse Finkelstein’s label Duchess Blue / Shinning Stone Records , he records his next album to be released in 2013 in Lakewest studios / Rhode Island with production and participation of Duke in some tracks. Jesse Finkelstein is the founder and producer of Radio Blues International, that broadcasts from the US and reaches subscribed listeners in more than 120 countries.
Nuno is considered by the media and fans of his native Brazil as the best blues guitarist to ever come out of their country. Fans of British guitar legend Eric Clapton identify with graffiti once spray-painted on a London wall; “Clapton is God”. In Brazil the graffiti says “Mindelis – Brazil’s Guitar God!”.