Azymuth are a Brazilian samba-jazz/funk trio from Rio, formed in 1971. They first appeared as “Conjunto Azimuth” on the 1973 O Fabuloso Fittipaldi soundtrack alongside Marcos Valle and Paulo Sérgio Valle. Under the name Azimüth, they released a self-titled EP on Polydor and an eponymous album on Som Livre, both in 1975. Their 1977 Atlantic release Águia não come Mosca premiered the canonical “Azymuth” spelling, as used on their subsequent albums for Milestone, Intima, and other labels from 1979-onward.

Members: José Roberto Bertrami (keyboards), Alex Malheiros (bass), Ivan Conti [aka “Mamão”] (drums)

Azymuth had its roots in Projeto III, a bossa nova trio comprised of bassist Alex Malheiros, drummer Ivan Conti, and pianist José Roberto Bertrami. They released two albums on Equipe: O Trio (1968) and Encontro (1970). Under the name Apolo IV, the trio contributed “Azimuth (Mil Milhas)” to the soundtrack to the 1969 Brazilian telenovela Véu de Noiva, released on Philips.

Bertrami (credited on Encontro as Zé Roberto) hailed from Os Tatuís, which issued a singular, self-titled album in 1965 on Farroupilha. In 1966, he headed the José Roberto Trio for an eponymous album on said label. After Projeto III, he played on the live album Show Elis / Miele by singer Elis Regina. In 1972, he played on albums by Angelo Antonio, Carlos Lyra, Clara Nunes, Erasmo Carlos, and the third self-titled album by Tim Maia. On the last of those, Bertrami interacted with percussionist Ariovaldo Contesini.

Bertrami, Malheiros, and Conti regrouped as Alan and His Orchestra for the 1972 Polydor single “Concerto Para Um Verão = Concert for a Summer” (b/w “The Girl From Paramaribo”). As Som Ambiente, they recorded an album of Latin jazz and easy listening covers for ‎ Companhia Industrial de Discos (CID).

In 1973, the trio played on the album Eu Quero e Botar Meu Bloco Na Rua by singer/songwriter Sérgio Sampaio, produced by Raul Seixas. As Conjunto Azimuth, they backed Marcos Valle on the Philips soundtrack to the Brazilian racing movie O Fabuloso Fittipaldi.

During 1974, Bertrami, Malheiros, and Contesini played on the Top Tape release Ninguem Vai Me Segurar by Ana Mazzotti and the RCA debut by Helio Matheus. Concurrently, Bertrami appeared on the singular album by Jaime & Nair while Malheiros and Conti played on the soundtrack to Vila Sésamo, the Brazilian version of Sesame Street.

Bertrami, Malheiros, Conti, and Contesini coalesced as Azimüth and debuted with a 1975 EP on Polydor.


  • Azimüth (EP, 1975)
  • Azimüth (1975)
  • Águia não come mosca (1977)
  • Light as a Feather (1979)
  • Outubro (1980)
  • Cascades (1982)
  • Telecommunication (1982)
  • Rapid Transit (1983)
  • Flame (1984)
  • Spectrum (1985)
  • Tightrope Walker (1986)
  • Crazy Rhythm (1987)
  • Carioca (1989)
  • Tudo Bem (1989)


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