Meet Brazil’s Millennial Music Makers

Sao Paulo singer Kell Smith

Meet Brazil’s Millennial music makers: A baker’s dozen of the best new generatrional voices from the Land of Samba and Sun.

by Scott Adams

Meet Brazil’s Millennial music makers and be prepared for new names and new sounds. It’s true. Every generation has had its rising stars.

Carmen Miranda had just turned 30 when she arrived in New York from Rio in 1939; Antonio Carlos Jobim wrote many of his best songs by age 25. And Marisa Monte was only 22 when she recorded her first album in 1989.

Here are 13 of Brazil’s best Millennial music makers to keep an eye on in the year ahead, and an ear, too: They are all part of the playlists for our steaming music channels at Connectbrazil.com (always live, always free).

Alexia Bomtempo – Mais Devegar

Recently featured as part of our ‘Songs In the Feminine Key’ streaming radio special, this Millennial music maker was born in Washington DC, spent her childhood in Brazil. “I’ve wanted to be an artist for as long as I can remember and was very fortunate to be raised in a home where we constantly listened to great records,” she says. Suspiro is on track to become a breakout album for her, and perhaps one of 2020’s best.

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Ana Clara – Bipolar

Ana Clara’s ‘old school sambista’ roots belie a refreshingly modern style with an original bent that makes her stand out from a spotlight-grabbing field of Brazilian Rap and Hip Hop performers. Already working on a new album, fans are flocking to this Rio de Janeiro native, who is ever closer to earning the coveted Carioca moniker, ‘da gema’.

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Anitta with Poo Bear – Will I See You

Not long ago, Forbes asked the question “Could Anita Be A Global Superstar?” Well, you can now safely replace the word ‘could’ with ‘will’. #1 pop singles? Check. Sings in Portuguese, Spanish and English? (note to other Brazilian singers…) Check. Anitta recorded “Will I See You’ with Poo Bear and a musical gift for his birthday. 43.5 million views of this song? Sweet.

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Daniela Soledade

Back when Daniela Soledade was recording this song, no one could have known that it would become a lasting tribute to João Gilberto, the Father of Bossa Nova who passed away in July. And just as with her debut album, ‘Eu Sambo Mesmo’ opened Gilberto’s legendary self-titled recording back in 1991. The lesson? Never pass up the chance to Meet Brazil’s Millennial music makers.

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Ella & The Bossa Beat – My Remedy

Identified as a ‘Trending New Name’ in our Top Summer Sambas of 2020, Ella Borges’s Brazilian American musical roots are as generational as they are geographic: her father, Magrus is as talented a percussionist and composer as any on the planet. Together, they share a talent for remarkable musicmaking. His insight guides her debut album, and there’s no denying the growing maturity that comes from her lyrics and storytelling on ‘My Remedy’.

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Gabriel Martins – Stand Up Paddle Girl

Son of Ivan Lins’ famed songwriting partner, Vitor Martins, guitarist Gabriel brings Brazil’s Millennial proclivities to instrumental jazz with satisfying warmth and originality. There’s more than a little introspection here too, drawn from nature and the sea to give us unfiltered access to Martins’ artistic sensitivity. There’s a lot of creative honesty in this man’s music.

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Kell Smith – Girassol

Okay, so we’ll all remember 2020 as the summer we couldn’t go to the beach. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t enjoy the experience. Here, the 27-year old singer/songwriter from Sao Paulo shares a song about the year we live in: “The world is so crazy,” she sings. “When I don’t know what the direction is, all I do is follow my heart.” Perfect.

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Luca Mundaca – Cidades

Spend just a few minutes with Luca Mundaca’s music and you’ll understand: here’s a gifted singer and songwriter with formidable talent. A Brazilian American who now calls Cleveland her home, it goes to prove that you’ll never know where you’ll Meet Brazil’s Millennial music makers. Luca’s music was featured in both Putumayo’s Brazilian Lounge and Women of the World: Acoustic compilations. Maybe your personal playlist will want to feature her, too.

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Mahmundi – Azul

I program and write about Brazilian music on a daily basis, and I’ve been doing it for quite a while, so when a song instantly makes me stop whatever I’m doing, I’m prepared to be impressed. Mahmundi’s ‘Azul’ is one of those songs. Born and raised in Rio, this talented Millennial is one of a small group of singer/songwriters smartly positioned to lead MPB (Brazilian Popular Music) towards a brighter future. Now, if she would just record this song in English…

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Marcela Mangabeira – Para Ti

Once upon a time, I owned a small label and we partnered with Roberto Menescal’s Albatroz Musica in Rio de Janeiro. Our first release was Marcela Mangabeira’s standout debut album, Simples. Since then, Marcela has gone on to become Brazil’s best-known voice on YouTube, enjoyed by millions of fans worldwide. You can count me in that group, too.

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Mariana Nolasco – Era Amor

Connect Brazil is a great place to meet Brazil’s Millennial music makers, and here’s one of the youngest performers on this list. The official upside on Mariana Nolasco’s singing and songwriting talent is off the charts. Literally. She’s not signed to a music label. Self-taught, she began uploading videos to Facebook as a teen. Then she moved to YouTube to become one of Brazil’s most popular streaming performers. Her first tour included 25 sold-out shows in ten Brazilian states, and she’s no stranger to Connect Brazil’s streaming network where she’s been part of our playlists for nearly three years.

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Roberta Sa – Giro

Already a prominent voice within her country’s rising generation, Roberta Sa is attracting attention from the stratosphere of Brazilian pop, by virtue of her 2017 Latin Grammy nomination and a brace of radio hits. This song about the spirit of Bahia was a gift from Gilberto Gil and it’s proved to be a showcase for her talent. Not familiar? I’m betting that you’ll love her style.

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Silva – Ainda Lembro

Did we mention MPB?  Brazilian pop is making a welcome comeback on the talents of a core group of ‘rising star’ songwriters. Among these Matatlantica Millennials is Silva, who gained instant recognition as Marisa Monte’s songwriting partner. The future is bright for Brazilian music and for Silva, who is too talented to not be heard singing in English. This song checks that box, too. At least partially.

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Tiago Iorc – Coisa Linda

Three years ago, Brasilia-born Tiago Iorc was at the top of his game, as one of his country’s most popular singer/songwriters. Four best-selling albums, singing in English and Portuguese. A pair of Latin Grammy wins and millions of fans. Then… he disappeared, texting that he was burned out from the rigors of social media and touring as a Millennial MPB superstar. Well, his songwriting sabbatical has ended and his return has only increased his popularity, as evidenced by thousands of fans wanting to meet Brazil’s Millennial music makers like Tiago Iorc. Here’s an early hit.

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