Brasilliance! was founded in 1992 by Ray Moore as a vehicle to explore the music and rhythms of Brazil. The name of the group comes from a tune by Duke Ellington, part of his Latin American Suite. It conjures the idea of the famed sleeping giant bathed in the reflected light of her beauty in all its diversity.

Originally, the group consisted of a core quartet augmented by a small batucada group, with visual spice added by dancers. The repertoire was varied; from bossa nova and MPB for openers to samba de enredo and frevo at the climaxes of the shows. Also included was a section devoted to candomblê, in homage to the African heritage so prevalent in all Brazilian art and culture. It was through this eclectic song list that the brasilianidade of the group was born.

This larger version of the group persisted for over two years, after which the simpler 'quartet + two' format was adopted. Several versions later, and after spending more time in Brazil, the focus had shifted to a more jazz-oriented group, devoting much of the repertoire to one of Brazil's master musicians, Hermeto Pascoal.

In 2000, Ray had the opportunity to meet Hermeto in New Orleans, and in 2001 visited him at his home. This visit included jamming with the group and Hermeto presented Ray with a tune composed for that visit to New Orleans, Rio Mississippi. Brasilliance! had the honor of making the premiere recording of this tune, in addition to being among the first groups worldwide to record selections from the Calendário do Som.

Brasilliance! was invited to play at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival in 2004 and 2005. Also in 2005 participated in the Bay Springs Jazz Festival in Bay Springs, MS. Hurricane Katrina worked some of her magic on the group members, and since the storm Tom Sciple, bass, and Eric Lucero, trumpet, have been living in other parts of the United States. Shortly before the storm, Ray Moore, Mike Lemmler and Wayne Maureau formed Trio de Janeiro. This is the 'post-K' Brasilliance!