The Best of Brazilian Music Showcase for 2019 – And The Stories Behind Each One
The Best of Brazilian Music Showcase for 2019! For Brazilian music fans, 2019 will be remembered for the wealth of excellent new releases from all corners of the globe, for outstanding one-of-a-kind concerts and tours, and for its unforgettable stories and breaking news.
The year’s top story was the passing of Joao Gilberto, The Father of Bossa Nova in July, leaving behind his daughter Bebel and her siblings, and a musical legacy of which spans generations and nations.
Film buffs flocked to see screenings of Black Orpheus to celebrate it’s 60th anniversary.
Headlines shared the stage with live music in 2019. Lulu Santos made his very first concert tour to the USA; Ivan Lins, Marcos Ariel and Ricardo Silveira returned to California and Zizi Possi and daughter Luiza shared the stage on Mother’s Day in São Paulo (ahead of a very special moment) for the very first time.
Other concert highlights included Guilherme Arantes, Monica Salmaso and Guinga, Sergio Mendes with Bebel Gilberto, plus major tours for Vanessa da Mata, Caetano Veloso and sons, Adriana Calcanhotto and Daniela Mercury. And Connect Brazil’s coast-to-coast guides for Carnaval and Brazilian Day helped people stay in touch with the music and the culture.
Yes, the final year of the millennium’s second decade is one for the record books.
But for fans, 2019 will be remembered as a banner year for New Music. More than 30 exceptional releases dotted the calendar this year, and here are 10 of the very best.
- Click ‘Next’, or use the drop-down menu to browse (for Desktop and Laptop).
- Listen to all 10 songs, non-stop on Connect Brazil’s Video Bar.
Scott Adams, Creative Director
How do we open our Best of Brazilian Music Showcase for 2019? With a story, of course.
Two 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. There was a rumor about London, and maybe he was seen in Los Angeles. After that, silence. Read more…
S-Tone Inc./Try My Love
S-Tone? That’s Milan’s Stefano Tirone, the multi-instrumental jazz musician and producer responsible for guiding all three of Toco’s albums (including Instalação Do Samba, Outro Lugar and Memoria). He is also a driving force for a unique and contemporary vision of Brazilian jazz, pop and Bossa Nova that’s shared by many of his labelmates at Irma/Schema Records, including Rosalia de Souza, Beat Girls and Nicola Conte.
Released digitally and on 7-inch vinyl ‘Try My Love’ is an old-school throwback to Acid Jazz and 80’ Brazilian Soul, blended into a downtempo drumming groove, that’s both relaxed and dreamy. Read more…
Mick Jagger, Carole King and Brazil’s Marcos Valle. What do they all have in common? They are all in their 70’s and still kicking’ it. But while the first two stay busy with well-earned victory laps, Bossa Nova legend Marcos Valle is still pushing the music forward.
Yep, the blond beach boy who wrote ‘Samba de Verão’ (So Nice/Summer Samba) in 1963 somehow manages to stay young in thought, word and deed. This makes his album Sempre both timely and timeless, earning a spot on the Best of Brazilian Music Showcase for 2019. Read more…
Daniela Soledade/A Moment Of You
Back when Daniela Soldade 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.
That makes A Moment of You a worthy contender among a competitive field of singer-songwriters for the Best of Brazilian Music Showcase for 2019. Released in September, the album features Bossa Nova gems, standards and original songs as a stunning… Read more…
Antonio Adolfo/Samba Jazz Alley
There’s a reason why Antonio Adolfo is always in the upper echelon when it comes to the Brazilian piano. As a songwriter, he gave Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66 one of their all-time greatest hits with ‘Sa Marina’ (‘Pretty World’). With more than 25 albums, Adolfo’s music spans decades, styles and cultures. As an educator, his seminars have taught a generation of musicians how to pull magic from the building blocks of Brazilian song.
2019’s Samba Jazz Alley takes its name from Copacabana’s celebrated cul-de-sac called Beco das Garrafas, home to several music bars where Bossa Nova’s change agents mingled well into the night with Rio’s… Read more…
Carla Hassett/Adriana, Sempre Odara, Three Kings
2019 gave us a trio of new songs from Los Angeles-based Carla Hassett, and each one is of the highest quality, thanks to Carla’s vocals and her recording partner, Burl Audio, the highly-respected brand for exceptional high end recording gear. Burl wanted to capture the authentic swing of Bossa Nova, and Carla came up with an idea.
“I asked Burl to dig deep into the barrel, and that’s when they came up with Robero Menescal’s Bossa gem ‘Adriana,’” she said. “With its exquisite groove in 5/4 meter and intimate vocal style, I knew we were… Read more…
Roy Stephansen/Northern Lights
When you’re on this side of the equator, Winter’s snow, cold and shorter days create the urge to fly south to Rio’s sun-kissed beaches. But the flight time from New York is 10 hours. Imagine what that urge is like when you are 18 non-stop hours north of the land of Samba and Sun?
Trombonist Roy Stephansen creates silky smooth Sambas and Bossa Novas from his home studio in one of the world’s northern-most regions, Finnmark, at the tip of… Read more…
Marcos Ariel/Wave Hunter
It’s been a busy year for Marcos Ariel. In March, the Carioca keyboardist made his vocal debut with a six-song EP, Soul Carioca. September brought another new album (his 32nd) titled Wave Hunter, which unites Ariel with guitarist Enéas Marques and drummer Roberto Alemão Marques, two brothers better known as Dual Jazz. Growing up in Rio de Janeiro’s beach districts and the surfing communities found on the way to Buzios and the Sun Coast, all three have a strong lifestyle connection with this album’s musical muse.
The sea. Songs like… Read more…
Cecy Santana/Sem Você
A musical pedigree is always a double-edged sword. On one hand, it can open a lot of doors for you. On the other hand, you’d better be prepared to walk through them. That’s one challenge that Chicago’s singer and songwriter Cecy Santana can check off the list.
Born in São Paulo, she learned her musical craft from her father, Carlos Santana, whose legendary trumpet has graced hundreds of concerts and recordings, notably with Gal Costa and Roberto Carlos. Dad also happened to… Read more…
Ziggy Blue Featuring Natalis/O Que Faltou
Bossa Nova has always been about reinvention: the two factions that started the movement in Rio couldn’t even agree on what kind of music it should be, and Bossa Nova didn’t even come by its name until it was a few years old. Even now musicologists (God bless ‘em) can’t decide whether Bossa Nova is a musical style or a bona fide genre. Whatever.
Enter Ziggy Blue, the Atlanta-based producer whose award-winning projects with hip-hop and house music made him hear something else in Bossa Nova. Something that wasn’t there.
So, he partnered up with songwriter Fernanda Noronha for an original tune with a irresistible hook, tapped multi-platinum recording artist… Read more…