Nuno Bettencourt



Washburn Nuno Bettencourt Guitar

Nuno Bettencourt used to do clinics in my store years before he became famous. He worked as a Washburn guitar clinician for quite some time before Extreme hit the charts.



Generations Of Music from a Musical Family

In 1969, Nuno's  father emigrated to the States first to pave the way for his family; Ezequiel and Aureolina had decided a few years before that the States would provide better futures for their children. The rest of the family joined him in Boston, Massachusetts shortly after Nuno turned four years old. At some point after, Nuno's dad left, leaving his mom to take care of the family.

Nuno pursued sports in school, later giving it up when he decided he was too slight to become professional (ever see a photo of him next to Cam Neely?). His description of himself as "invisible" in school became fact when he gave that up too in his last semester, to concentrate on his music career.

Nuno's great-grandfather, maestro Mendes Enes, formed the first brass band on the Island of Graciosa.

Nuno's grandmother, Palmira Mendes Enes, was a teacher of piano and dance, also on Graciosa. After moving to Terceira, she formed the first jazz orchestra in the Azores.

Nuno's father,Ezequiel, was well-known on the island for his musical talent. He gave lessons to the children of the North American military station in Terceira, and played music in everything from country-western and pop-rock bands, to philharmonicas... For awhile in the 1990s, Ezequiel had a musical instrument shop called Central Street Music Shop around Boston.

Nuno was born last in a family of ten children, all of whom played at least one instrument. He credits their wide-ranging musical interests and talents for his own varied styles. At first he resisted learning music, being more interested in sports. His first musical passion was for drumming. Later, frustrated with his inability to play the way he wanted, he turned to bass. However, he found he was playing too many notes on this instrument, so finally in 1980, he chose the guitar. In between, he started picking up keyboards... Nuno is completely self-taught, though he's quick to add that living in a household full of musicians could only benefit him.

Nuno's brother Robert plays in bands (including bass for Jorge Ferreira), and joined Nuno for the background vox on "Fallen Angels". Robert's son, Donovan, assisted with the engineering and toured with Nuno as bassist for Schizophonic and was his bassist in "Mourning Widows". Luis returned to the Azores in the '80s and has built up a strong reputation as a first-rate guitarist there working solo and with his band Balado do Atlantico... His brother John had at one point joined up with Gary Cherone's fraternal twin Greg for musical endeavors which included a Shakespearean play with music, while Paulo was working with Gary's younger brother Markus for about 8 years in a band called Flesh (but is now solo). They released an album on Nuno's Colorblind Records label, which Nuno produced. Paulo also joined the Schizophonic tour as backup vocalist, synth guitarist, and tambourine man, and is now moving in a solo career... Nuno's sister, Teresa, is also mentioned in an article to be a semi-professional musician, and she is also a talented painter.

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