Earlier this year, Glauco Sölter, one of the members of the instrumental group NaTocaia, gave a performance at Caixa Cultural Theatre in Curitiba, alongside Ron Carter, one of the most famous jazz bass players in the world.
Glauco later commented: “Playing with Ron Carter was one of the greatest honors I’ve had the pleasure of experiencing. It was like a sign telling me I’m going the right way. Keep walking.”
Glauco, a bass player from Paraná, shared the stage with Ron Carter, a music legend, in stunning fashion, sharing moments of complicity not only with Carter, but also with the audience. Glauco’s technical competence was on display as he wove a heart-and-soul like combination of the musical score and his emotions. His solos were impeccable, even to the ears of Ron Carter, a bass icon. Carter, with all his elegance, shared the applause with his stage partners, once again proving to be a master and a gentleman.
Glauco Sölter is a shining symbol of the Brazil, Paraná, and Curitiba musical culture. He was born in Cascavel, and after nearly 30 years as a professional musician, still strives to improve every day. His story began ages ago simply as a child at play on a home piano.
The simple piano play eventually evolved to learning to read music and rehearsals with a small group of friends. A short time later, Glauco had a frustrating introduction to the electric guitar, but when tried the bass, the enchantment was immediate.
At the age of 15, the dream of living by his music gained strength inside Glauco. An unimaginable task for most people, even nowadays, he says that at that time, he envisioned the difficulties he would face as a professional musician, which he calls “a circus” – insecure but at the same time free!
The support that he had from his parents was vital in making his decision. The freedom of pursuing what he loved most in life, his passion for music, was the thing that kept him going. Glauco describes uncountable times when he was studying music, he ended up falling sleeping over his instrument. The necessity of doing a good job, expressing himself through music to other musicians and the public, providing a good performance and a good “product” to sell in order to survive; all of this guided him to excel at the bass.
Glauco has studied with such big-name musicians such as Yuri Ferreira, the bassist for Jan Garbarek. He has also participated in workshops with Nelson Faria, Uakti Group, Pollaco, and studied at Berklee College for one semester, a premier music academy in the US. Despite this, he doesn’t consider himself the most assiduous student because he’s always been self-taught and learned most of what he knows from playing with others. Even today, he hasn’t stopped considering himself an apprentice.
Glauco has seen almost all of Brazil thanks to his music, with projects such as Pixinguinha with the singer Carlos Careqa. The fist time that he played abroad was with the singer João Lopes, in Sweden, in 1992, in a show that had already been performed in Paraná. In 1998 he played with his own trio at the Montreux Jazz Festival. He went to Europe with the accordionist Bebê Kramer and Raul de Souza to perform in several international festivals in Germany, Sweden, France, Tunisia, Slovakia, Romania, and Réiunion Island. With the Mano a Mano Trio, he also played in Italy, Peru, Argentina, and Venezuela.
For many years now, Glauco has continued to make at least one international trip per year, bringing his music and Brazilian culture to different cities throughout the world. For him, the biggest pleasure in these experiences is the opportunity to get to know other cultures, while at the same time to exchange musical ideas with many different people.
Of course, this is a dream that had its ups and downs in an artist’s life. At the same time that Glauco was in love with music and the lifestyle of freedom, there was also a desire to have a “normal” life – with a family, a home, and simple routines. At times, he found himself questioning his lifestyle, forcing something of an identity crisis. However, it was always confirmed for him, again and again, that to be a professional musician, with all its pleasures and pains, was his destiny.
Glauco readily admits now that the source of his strength is his children, his parents, his wife, and his true friends. “All these people that I love and that are close to me are the ones that move me. Also, it’s my passion for the music; it’s practically my self-esteem. That is why I think that love is my huge engine. In situations where I’ve reached my limit, it’s love that brings me back to my senses and gives me the strength to keep going, facing the obstacles of life.”
It only takes seeing a single performance by Glauco to know that this is truly his destiny. He exhibits such an enormous outpouring of joy while performing that it’s clear his fulfillment is right there while on stage.
Nowadays, Glauco’s group is called the Glauco Sölter Noneto, with Daniel Migliavacca on mandolin; Joel Mueller on guitar; Márcio Rosa and Luis Rolim on percussion; Sérgio Coelho on trombone; Sérgio Albach on clarinet; Paulo Siqueira on sax and flute; Sandro Guaraná on trumpet; and Glauco on fretless and acoustic bass.
His true goal is to continue making all of this great music but with a more focused energy, so he can live a quiet life with even greater results.
“Happiness is a priority. In general, it has always been present in my life. Being happy is like a gift because it is so simple for some and so complicated for others,” he concludes.
Glauco Sölter’s songs and live performances are available on YouTube.
This article was written by Manuela Niclewicvz and edited by CIE.