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Cristina Branco was born 1972 in Almeirim, Ribatejo, Portugal. She is a Portuguese musician.
Cristina was originally drawn to jazz and other forms of Portuguese music before finally opting for fado after being introduced to the music of Amália Rodrigues by her grandfather. Branco studied the poems from which major fado lyrics are taken. Branco continues to work on her fado repertory, accompanied by Custódio Castelo on guitar and as composer.
Cristina has released five records, including her groundbreaking 2001 release Corpo Iluminado, and 2005's Ulisses. Her recordings explore the headier, more intellectual side of the music - often adapting the work of contemporary European poets as the texts of her compositions - and rely heavily on the deft arrangements of her collaborator guitarist/songwriter Custódio Castelo.
Since her debut Cristina has become a noted fadista in Portugal and Europe—and is especially popular in the Netherlands. She's also made some inroads in North America, touring and releasing albums in the U.S. regularly. As her career has blossomed, she has taken her place alongside Mariza in the front ranks of contemporary Portuguese fadistas, and her work provides a thoughtful counterpoint to the sometimes outsized theatrics of her contemporaries.
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