Today, over half of Brazil's population identifies themselves as black or of mixed-race, and a rich mix of West African traditions influence modern Brazilian culture - from Samba to Carnival.
On camera, Carlos takes Shasta to the Sambadrome, where 100,000 screaming fans will witness Carnival's throbbing pageantry in February, and to a local samba night club to listen to live samba music.
Want to watch for yourself? You can find the video on CNN's site: CNN Inside Africa. And if you'd like to take advantage of Carlos' expert knowledge of his city on your next trip to Rio, you can learn more about him and start a conversation here: Carlos' guide page.