Uxía, "the Atlantic's voice", is considered the grand dame of Galician music and one of its
greatest ambassadors. In her more than 30 years of artistic career she has renewed the
traditional Galician music by connecting it with the Atlantic territories. Her work is a meeting
point of different cultures. She has published 12 albums, for which she has received important
awards; is the artistic director and alma mater of the International Festival of Lusophony,
Cantos Na Mare; and has her own record label.
Uxía was born in Sanguiñeda (Mos) in 1962 in a very musical family; she started singing at a
very young age, participating in different bands or as a soloist and composer. She studied
Romance Philology at the University of Santiago, where she got to know in depth Galician
literature and musical roots. Her career officially began in 1985. A year later Uxía joined the
band Na Lúa, with which she toured many stages and recorded two albums, A estrela de maio
(Edigal, 1987) and Ondas do mar de Vigo (GASA, 1989), which was awarded the Galician
In the nineties she resumed her solo career with the help of Xosé Ramón Paz Antón (member
of the group Na Lúa), who produced her second album; Entre cidades (Sons Galiza, 1991), an
emotional walk through the cities of the world in a literary key. Four years later an essential
album in her career arrives: Estou vivindo no ceo (Nubenegra, 1995), produced by the
Portuguese musician and composer Júlio Pereira, in which she shows a renewed glance on
Galician traditional music. Acclaim from national and international critics. Released in Europe,
USA and Canada, the album takes her on her first international tour, first in Europe (Germany,
Austria, Italy and Scotland) and then in Cuba and Argentina.
Her album La sal de la vida (Nubenegra, 1997) is a song to diversity, together with Rasha
(Sudan) and María Salgado (Castilla y León) and the flamenco guitar played by the Galician
musician Cuchús Pimentel, as an integrating element. Three years later she published Danza
das areas (Yerbabuena-Virgin, 2000), a complex musical proposal produced by Nani García
with the participation of more than 40 musicians and voices, including Dulce Pontes, María del
Mar Bonet, Budiño, Karen Matheson, Donald Shaw (Capercaillie), Michael McGoldrick, Susana
Seivane, Filipa Pais and João Afonso.
At this time she also began to create and lead acclaimed groups of cantareiras (women who
recover the traditional music of their environment). Always socially committed, she became
the spokesperson of the citizen platform "Nunca máis" during the Prestige catastrophe of
2002, and also traveled on several occasions to sing at the Sahrawi refugee camps in Tindouf.
In 2003 she created one of her most outstanding projects, the International Festival of
Lusophony "Cantos Na Maré", a pioneering cultural project that traces a common map
between the Atlantic territories through music, rhythms and sounds that share common roots
and origins. Every year, The Festival invites emerging and established artists from different
Portuguese-speaking countries to create a collective show in which artists such as Chico César,
Carlos do Carmo, Lenine, Tito Paris, Sara Tavares, Rui Veloso and Aline Frazão, have already
Her fifth studio album, Eterno navegar (Harmonia Mundi, 2008), considered among the best in
the World Music category by the BBC, is an album in which Uxía, together with pianist and
producer Paulo Borges, manages to combine the most Galician roots with Portuguese and
African songs in a natural, innovative and avant-garde way. With it, Uxía travels once again
through the Peninsula and Latin America, offering a series of concerts in Cuba, Brazil,
Argentina and Uruguay.
Given her connection with Brazilian culture, she decided to record her sixth album, Meu canto
(Fol Música, 2011), in Rio de Janeiro, at the Biscoito Fino studios with Jaime Alem (musical
director of Maria Bethânia) as producer and under the musical direction and arrangements of
Brazilian multi-instrumentalist virtuoso Sérgio Tannus. The album, which is a celebration of
her 25 years in music, contains re-readings of some historical songs of her career along with
other unreleased ones. With it, she received important awards, such as “Best Roots Music
Album” at the Spanish Independent Music Awards and the “Opinion Award for Best Folk Music
Artist and Career”, and was chosen “Top of the World” by the British magazine Songlines.
In 2015 she created her own record label, with which she self-produced Baladas da Galiza
Imaxinaria (Damadriña, 2015) together with the Galician musician and composer Narf. The
project -which combines the personal sound of the electric guitar with Galician vocals and
tambourine- emerged on a tour through Chile, Uruguay and Argentina and led them to
participate in the 26th National Chamamé Festival (Argentina) and to their first tour of the
Some of the constants that can be identified in her musical career are the dialogue between
cultures, the defense of linguistic identity, miscegenation and the search for a space for the
It is a scents seeker, a persecutor of the fable and fantasy, an explorer of beauty, an acolyte of
the mystic of the profane; a healer through ecstasy. A teller of stories of rapturous love, of the
irrevocable, of the indefeasible hour of the kisses, the urgency of the bodies without delay, the
sweetest tear and the most beautiful laughter. Portraitist of profiles but at the same time,
landscaper; what matters is the personage and the exotic place that surrounds it, where the
unreal is almost touchable because is reflected in the real. And all of this it's seen, because it's
His sources: From his childhood, the family; from Flamenco, its “Cantes de ida y vuelta”,
"Tanguillos" and "Bulerías"; from Rock, the Old School; from Jazz, the attitude and loyalty;
from the Spanish Literature, the poets of the "27th Generation", with their exuberant words
that are poetry with wings; from America, the Caribbean Singers and the "Magic Realism".
From the popular, the humour and from his native land, the joy! His purpose: to rewrite a
proverb, reconcile with his soul, emulate Federico García Lorca, and entertain..., perhaps
touching the audience.
Thirty years of experience endorse this creative musician, different to those of his culture and
generation. Composer, arranger, guitarist, singer, self-taught and heterodox; Ruibal is a
These and an endless number of definitions have been used to define this unclassifiable
creator for the very personal nature of his artistic proposal. Bordering Flamenco, he always let
himself be fascinated and wrapped by it, but taking care not to pass himself off as what he
always wanted to make clear he was not: A Flamenco singer; but not for a lack of interest, but
for an absolute respect to the style. However, a good part of the new flamenco is directly
influenced by this artist who discovers himself as a true innovator of the musical and poetic
His music and lyrics are taken care of with the caring and strictness that characterize him.
Well-billed arrangements and a guitar execution with personality and strength, but when he
decides that his proposal needs further strength, he surrounds himself with the most creative
and generous musicians.
The qualities of his voice allow him to travel free and relief through the sounds of flamenco,
the music of the Maghreb, India and the Caribbean, in a constant and harmonious back and
forth that invites us to firmly believe that the fusion of music and blood will bring us a meeting
place for happiness, a new planet that still is in formation.
José Manuel Caballero Bonald
FROM YOUR HOUSE TO MINE
"From your house to mine" is a musical portrait of two universal poets, Rosalía and Lorca, from
the hand and the feelings of two souls who try to put wings to the poetry made by both
authors. And they will do it through melodies that will give us a deeper knowledge of their
work and the deep admiration that Lorca felt for Rosalía, in a North-South union present in
their poetry and that, in Lorca's case, will have its culmination in the "Six Galician Poems",
published in 1935.
Uxía and Ruibal have a long experience in putting music to poetry; this work is a step further in
a story of friendship and complicity that follows the path initiated by Lorca from Granada to
Santiago, sealing that brotherhood and closeness of spirit and ideals; putting in the center
what unites us and not what separates us, building bridges on the verses and the souls of two
Both come from the Iberian popular music circuit that is projected to the world; they are two
voices that imbibe from all that heritage that Lorca and Rosalía transferred to their verses and
that are pure musicality and inspiration. Music, in fact, was also a main pillar for both poets,
as many of the verses they created were inspired on popular tunes.
“I have held three meetings on the road that goes from your house to mine: First one, the
happy twinning between Rosalía de Castro and Federico García Lorca. It is very difficult to
understand contemporary Spanish poetry without the legacy of Rosalía, a poet who turned
the romantic cry into whispered words and grandiloquent pain into intimate sadness.
García Lorca immersed himself in her words during his adolescence and learned how to
make himself in her lap. That's why he wanted to write his "Seis Poemas Galegos" (Six
Galician Poems) when life offered him new emotional connections with Galicia through
Ernesto Guerra da Cal. Encounters are a shared richness that widens one's own individual
voice. As in love, the dialogue between cultures allows us to feel united while respecting
I also encounter the old brotherhood of poetry and song. The memory of the orality origins
in literary expressions is strengthened by the popular lyric. Sometimes poets who seek very
precise words, as it is their duty, end up by smelling like closed. In those cases, the best
remedy is to open the windows so as to let life come in with the songs of the hand; as did
Gil Vicente, Lope de Vega, Bécquer, Rosalía and Lorca. A collective feeling is condensed in
every love, in every way of talking to nature, in every solitary rain, in every shared party
and every journey of the moon.
The third encounter I celebrate in this "From your house to mine" is the one between two
singers I truly admire: Uxía and Ruibal. If we talk about cultural understanding, about
miscegenation, about the dialogues between the popular and the cultivated, between the
present and the traditions, Ruibal and Uxía have taught us to hear at once the heartbeat of
the earth and the most refined developments of that certain emotion that good songs
pursue. Creating is a round trip, shared with teachers, readers, audience, followers... that
starts beyond ourselves and takes you from your house to mine and from my house to
yours through time and its legends. Artists need to know how to put themselves in the
place of others in order to recognize their own place; hence the importance of readers for a
poet or of the people sentimental education for a singer. The art opens our doors and
windows, it shows us solidarity, it invites us to enter and leave from one house to the
other. Uxía and Ruibal, for instance, are in my house.
Luis García Montero