João Donato: between rock and Gospel

Carlos Calado
João Donato performs next weekend in São Paulo, and meets singer Ithamara Koorax on stage for the first time. Togehter, they are going to perform A Rã and Minha Saudade (both written by Donato). After a specifically prolific year, the songwriter and pianist seems determined not to slow it down. Besides recording with musician Eloir de Moraes, Donato has four CDs underway. Two of them on the label Deck, featuring 22 new songs (with lyrics by Lysias Ênio) and they might be called O Bicho Tá Pegando and Managarrôba, respectively. "It's a private joke on the rockers, who make weird songs", laughs Donato.

Also scheduled for 2001 are one instrumental album with Tom Jobim's songs and one album with songs by Tita and Edson Lobo. "They're a couple of friends of mine who told me about the Gospel for the first time, a while ago", he explains. "Their lyrics go about Jesus Christ, but I only want to record the music, which they make with very accurate feeling. It is rare to find non-commercial composers, these days", says the 66 year-old songwriter who is up for a change in his personal life, too. On the 17th, Donato gets married. The name of his new muse is Ivone. "I have always gone down the street when everyone else was going up. Now I want to walk along with everybody", claims the bossa master.