The New York City-based all-women Brazilian Samba Reggae drum line Fogo Azul (Blue Fire) was born at the intersection of founder and Buffalo, NY native, Stacy Kovacs’ passion for Samba Reggae, her deep respect for its cultural roots as a music of protest and resistance, her belief and activism in support of gender equality and her sense of civic duty in the current environment to publicly awaken and inspire women to resist oppression and exercise their power to uplift society —loudly. Launched in 2016 as an extension of Marcus Santos’s Samba Reggae-based Grooversity education project, Fogo Azul NYC is an age and ethnically diverse community of women who span the drummer spectrum from novice to professional.
With a corp of more than 80 members and growing, dressed in vibrant blue, the Fogo Azul drum line is a sight to behold. The group makes a memorable visual impact and its aural and vibratory presence fills performance venues. When marching in parades they can be heard and felt by spectators well before and after the impressive band with its powerful Brazilian polyrhythmic layers played with infectious joy and energy on surdo, dobra, repinique, snare drums by the drummers who move, en masse, in a syncopated, side-to-side step has passed by.