Born in Rio Branco, state of Acre, he used to play music with bamboo small flutes and saucepans in his childhood. One day he got an eight bass accordion as a gift and, later on, a higher accordion. In 1945, he moved to Rio de Janeiro with his family. There, he started to play on his school’s parties. On one of these parties, he met the band “Namorados da Lua” and started a friendship with Lúcio Alves, Nanai and Chicão. Four years later, he was already playing in the jam-sessions held at Dick Farney´s and at the Sinatra-Farney Fan Club, to which he was a member. In 1951, he participated in the northeastern music program 'Manhãs da roça', broadcasted by Zé do Norte, on the Rádio Guanabara. At the same time, he started to study piano.