Cape Verdean songstress and author Mayra Andrade made a name for herself as a songwriter and performer in her adolescence. By her early twenties she was an established talent, known throughout the Parisian world music scene for her keen writing and adept vocals. Mayra spent her earliest years globetrotting. Born in Cuba, she moved to Senegal, then Angola, followed by Germany, before settling on her parent's native island of Cape Verde. By her early teens Mayra displayed significant talent. Her victory in the songwriting competition at the Francophone Games in Canada at age 16 confirmed her position as a rising star. She performed throughout the Portuguese-speaking world, taking the stage in Praia, Mindelo, and Lisbon. Settling in Paris in 2002, Andrade worked her way up the ladder, performing at acoustic venues in various cities before eventually headlining major festivals. Her reputation earned opportunities to share both stage and studio with established veterans such as Charles Aznavour and Césaria Évora. Andrade released her debut solo record in 2005, entitled Navega. The album, distributed by media giant Sony BMG, enjoyed a lasting presence on World Music Charts Europe, among others. ~ Evan C. Gutierrez
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