Sarah Messias Sarmento is a multi-instrumentalist from the city of Jundiai, Sao Paulo, Brasil. In 2005 Sarah started to do harmonica lessons with a reputed teacher and a beast on the harmonica, Marcio Maresia.
At eleven years old, she became an endorsee for the Brazilian harmonica brand, Bends. Right after she started her studies on harmonica came also her interest in the Blues, listening to Little Walter, Robert Johnson, B.B. King, Muddy Waters and many other Blues legends. Much of the knowledge came also from her father, a great expert on history of music.
Also at eleven, she was invited by musician Vasco Faé to participate in a project named “Mulheres Gaitistas” (Woman that play Harmonica), playing at Sesc Ipiranga, one of the biggest cultural centers in Brasil. In the following year, Sarah participated in the “Mulheres Blueseiras” project, touring through São Paulo state. During the tour, she got to meet the great musician John Hammond. In 2010, Sarah was invited to participate in the “Blueseiros do Brasil” project, sharing the stage with some of the best Blues players in the country, including Leandro Ferrari, Vasco Faé, Artur Menezes, and Adriano Grineberg, among others.
In 2012, she won of a contest to receive a scholarship to a one-week course in Valencia, Spain. It was a partnership between Berklee and Lollapalooza. Later in the summer of 2012, Sarah flew to Valencia to do the program. At the end of the course, she was awarded with another scholarship, this time to go to Boston to do the 5-Week Program at the main Berklee campus.
Sarah was invited to play at the 2013 Lollapalooza Festival in Brasil in 2013.With her dad on drums, her sister on guitar and her friends Vasco Faé on lead guitar and Victor Abla on bass, the band gave a very energetic show at the festival, and were later featured on Globo, the biggest media channel in Brasil, being chosen as both the Best Upcoming Artist and Best Picture of the festival.
In July of 2013, Sarah went to Boston for the 5-Week Program at Berklee College of Music. During the program, she had the opportunity to do an audition and interview to win a scholarship to be a full-time student. During the last week, Berklee had a concert to announce the scholarships, and Sarah was awarded a Full-Tuition scholarship. She started Berklee a couple months after, on the Spring of 2014.
Since she arrived in Boston, Sarah has performed twice in the Storytellers event with Didi Stewart and Allizon Lissance, the Fall 2015 Convocation concert, the Singer Showcase with music of Elvis Presley, the Great American Songbook concert, amongst others.
Outside of Berklee, Sarah has played with Matthew Stubbs (Charlie Musselwhite), Chris Rivelli (Roomful of Blues), Doug Wolverton (Roomful of Blues), and many other amazing musicians. In 2015, Sarah was invited by her friends and idols from Roomful of Blues to play with them at the Celebrity Series of Boston event Let’s Dance. She has also played at Berklee with Big Yuki and Daru Jones (Jack White). And in 2016 she played at Blue Note with Brazilian artist, Seu Jorge.
During the winter break of 2015/2016, Sarah, along with Hunter Burgamy, Victor Abla and her father José Alberto, did a tour in Brasil, playing around São Paulo. She has also competed at the 2018 International Blues Challenge and played at the Elvis Week 2017, both events held in Memphis, TN.
Sarah started her own Blues/Rock band during the Fall 2014 semester, The Sarah Messias Band. They played originals, and Blues/Rock covers. In 2016, they changed their name to RiverS, starting to play more and more originals.
For the past year, Sarah has been discovering herself in her playing and singing, as she works on her first album. The idea is to use the harmonica in a completely unorthodox way in order to create something new and different. At her last year at Berklee College of Music, she keeps exploring more and more her creativity, going beyond any barriers that she might encounter.