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Eliane Elias
Born São Paulo, Brazil
Genres Jazz, bossa nova, Brazilian and Latin jazz
Occupation(s) Musician, pianist, composer, arranger, producer
Instruments Piano, vocals
Years active 1981–present
Labels Denon, Blue Note, EMI, RCA, Sony/BMG, ECM Records, Concord, Candid
Associated acts Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, Chucho Valdés, Toquinho, Vinicius de Moraes, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Steps Ahead, Randy Brecker, Gilberto Gil, Ivan Lins, Joao Bosco, Toots Thielemans

Eliane Elias is a Brazilian jazz pianist, singer, composer and arranger.


Elias was born in São Paulo, Brazil on 19 March 1960. She started studying piano when she was seven, and at age twelve she was transcribing solos from jazz musicians. She began teaching piano when she was fifteen, and began performing at seventeen with Brazilian singer-songwriter Toquinho and touring with the poet Vinicius de Moraes.

In 1981 she moved to New York City, where she attended The Juilliard School of Music. A year later she became part of the group Steps Ahead. In 1993 Elias signed with EMI Classics to record classical pieces, which were released on On the Classical Side.

In 2001, Calle 54, a documentary film by Spanish director Fernando Trueba, included Elias performing "Samba Triste." In 2002 she recorded The Lost Days with Denyce Graves, for whom she wrote a composition entitled "HaabiaTupi." In 2002, Elias signed with RCA/Bluebird, which issued Kissed by Nature. Dreamer was released in 2004 and received the Gold Disc Award, as well as being voted Best Vocal Album in Japan. It reached No. 3 on the pop charts in France and No. 4 on the Billboard magazine charts in the U.S. Around the City was released by RCA Victor in August 2006. In 2007, Elias released Something for You, which won Best Vocal Album of the Year and the Gold Disc Award in Japan. Something for You reached No. 1 on the U.S. jazz charts, No. 8 on Billboard, and No. 2 on the French jazz charts. In 2008, she recorded Bossa Nova Stories to celebrate the 50th anniversary of bossa nova.

In 2009, EMI Japan released Eliane Elias Plays Live. Light My Fire, released in 2011, features four compositions written or co-written by Elias and includes covers of songs by the Doors, Stevie Wonder, and Paul Desmond. In September 2011, her song "What About the Heart (Bate Bate)" was nominated for a Latin Grammy in the category of Best Brazilian Song. In 2012 she collaborated with bassist Marc Johnson on the album Swept Away, the Editor's and Critic's choice in 2012 Downbeat and Jazztimes magazines, respectively. Her 2013 release, I Thought About You, reached No. 1 on the U.S. and French websites; No. 2 on iTunes U.S., France and Brazil; and No. 4 on Billboard.

Made in Brazil, was followed by Dance of Time, which debuted at No. 1 on two Billboard: jazz and world music. Both Made in Brazil and Dance of Time debuted at No. 1 on iTunes in seven countries and won Grammy awards for Best Latin Jazz Album of the Year.

Her 2019 album Love Stories reached the #1 position as Best Seller Latin Jazz, #1 Best Seller Brazilian Jazz and #2 Best Seller Orchestral.

Her 2021 album Mirror, Mirror, which she recorded with Chick Corea and Chucho Valdès, won the Grammy Award for Best Latin Jazz Album.

Personal life

Elias is Brazilian of Italian and Spanish descent. She was married to American trumpeter Randy Brecker, with whom she has a daughter, the singer/songwriter Amanda Elias Brecker, born in 1984. She is married to Marc Johnson, who plays bass in her band and co-produces her recordings.


  • 1995: Grammy nomination, Best Jazz Solo Performance, Solos and Duets with Herbie Hancock
  • 1997: Best Jazz Album, DownBeat magazine Readers' Poll, The Three Americas
  • 1998: Grammy nomination, Best Large Jazz Ensemble, Impulsive with Bob Brookmeyer and The Danish Radio Jazz Orchestra
  • 2002: Grammy nomination, Best Latin Jazz Album, Calle 54
  • 2011: Latin Grammy nomination, Best Brazilian Song, What About the Heart (Bate Bate)
  • 2015: Latin Grammy nomination for Best Engineered Album, Made in Brazil
  • 2016: Grammy Award winner for Best Latin Jazz Album, Made in Brazil
  • 2017: Latin Grammy nomination for Best Engineered Album, Dance of Time
  • 2017: Latin Grammy Award winner for Best Latin Jazz/Jazz Album, Dance of Time
  • 2018: Winner of the Edison Lifetime Achievement Award (Holland)
  • Five times Gold Disc Awards (Japan)
  • 2019 Masterpiece award "Love Stories" (5 stars by "DownBeat" magazine)
  • 2021 Masterpiece award "Mirror Mirror" (5 stars by "DownBeat" magazine)
  • 2022: Grammy Award winner for Best Latin Jazz Album, Mirror Mirror


As leader

  • Amanda with Randy Brecker (Passport Jazz, 1985)
  • Illusions (Denon, 1987)
  • Cross Currents (Denon, 1988)
  • So Far So Close (Blue Note, 1989)
  • Eliane Elias Plays Jobim (Blue Note, 1990)
  • A Long Story (Manhattan, 1991)
  • Fantasia (Blue Note, 1992)
  • Paulistana (Blue Note, 1993)
  • On the Classical Side (EMI Classics, 1993)
  • Solos and Duets (Blue Note, 1995)
  • The Three Americas (Blue Note, 1997)
  • Impulsive! with Bob Brookmeyer & Danish Radio Jazz Orchestra (Stunt, 1997)
  • Eliane Elias Sings Jobim (Blue Note, 1998)
  • Everything I Love (Blue Note, 1999)
  • Kissed by Nature (Bluebird, 2002)
  • Brazilian Classics (Blue Note Records, 2003)
  • Dreamer (Bluebird, 2004)
  • Around the City (RCA Victor, 2006)
  • Something for You: Eliane Elias Sings & Plays Bill Evans (Somethin' Else, 2007)
  • Bossa Nova Stories (Blue Note, 2009)
  • Eliane Elias Plays Live (Blue Note, 2010)
  • Light My Fire (Concord Picante, 2011)
  • Swept Away(ECM, 2012)
  • I Thought About You (Concord Jazz, 2013)
  • Made in Brazil (Concord Jazz, 2015)
  • Dance of Time (Concord Jazz, 2017)
  • Music from Man of La Mancha (Concord Jazz, 2018)
  • Love Stories (Concord Jazz, 2019)
  • Mirror Mirror with Chick Corea and Chucho Valdés (Candid, 2021)
  • Quietude (Candid, 2022)

With Steps Ahead

  • Steps Ahead (Elektra Musician, 1983)
  • Holding Together (NYC, 2002)

As guest

  • Brecker Brothers, Out of the Loop (GRP, 1994)
  • Urszula Dudziak, Sorrow Is Not Forever...But Love Is (Keytone, 1983)
  • Peter Erskine, Motion Poet (Denon, 1988)
  • Michael Franks, Abandoned Garden (Warner Bros., 1995)
  • Denyce Graves, The Lost Days (BMG, 2002)
  • Joe Henderson, Double Rainbow: The Music of Antonio Carlos Jobim (Verve, 1995)
  • Toninho Horta, Moonstone (Verve Forecast, 1989)
  • Marc Johnson, Shades of Jade (ECM, 2005)
  • Marc Johnson, Swept Away (ECM, 2012)
  • Ivo Perelman, Ivo (King, 1989)
  • Andy Summers, World Gone Strange (Private Music, 1991)
  • Toots Thielemans, The Brasil Project (Private Music, 1992)
  • Toots Thielemans, The Brasil Project Vol. 2 (Private Music, 1993)
  • Ornella Vanoni, Ornella &... (CGD, 1986)

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Eliane Elias para niños

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