Brazilian-born musician to take stage with band PRATO at SunFest

Published: May. 5, 2023 at 4:46 PM EDT
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Brazilian born Nilton Strazzi remembers listening to his father’s jazz records as a little boy.

“Suddenly, I heard this unique sound and I was like what is this? My dad told me it was a saxophone,” he said. “I would just grab a broom and just close my eyes and just pretend. I would listen to Stan Getz, Charlie Parker, Coltraine.”

That was the start to a prolific career in music.

“I really want to study music, but I didn’t have the ways to do it back in Brazil,” Strazzi said. “So, out of the blue, somebody knocked on my door and said do you want lessons. I said I can’t afford it and he’s like I’m going to give you the lessons for free.”

Those lessons helped bring Strazzi’s dream of being a saxophonist a reality all the way to performing at SunFest with his band PRATO, an acronym for pure, rhythm attack and take over.

Bunch of Brazilian guys, we play in Spanish, Portuguese and English,” he said. “We do ska; we do reggae. It’s a mix of everything, so it’s really fun.”

When he’s not performing on stage, Strazzi loves giving back by teaching youth to play the instrument he has perfected.

“I have a lot of students and I’ve seen how they’ve progressed, how they have some type of a bad habit and they chose music instead of doing something else,” he said. “They just keep playing and one thing is connected to another and their entire life changes, just because they are playing an instrument.”

Strazzi said music speaks more than words and is the heart that beats the universe.

Scripps Only Content 2023