Percussionist and songwriter Tony Mola has helped to bring the music of Bahia, a state in northeastern Brazil, to international attention. Together with his 13-piece band Bragada, Mola has created a dance music that combines hip-hop and salsa influences with traditional samba and forro rhythms. The group was named Best New Band at Carnaval 1998. A co-founder of Timbalada with Carlinhos Brown, Mola was living in New York when he formed Bragada with members of a percussion ensemble that he directed. Since returning to Mola’s homeland in the early ’90s, the group has continued to explore what he calls a “new tribal music.” Mola’s greatest success as a songwriter came when he wrote and arranged a tune, “Feijao de Corda,” for Bahian vocalist Daniela Mercury’s chart-topping album Feijão com Arroz.