From a comment in my Twitter feed:
“You may not know the composer but you know the song”
The Composer was João Gilberto and the song “Girl From Ipanema”
But Gilberto was more than that one song, He created a new genre of music, Bossa Nova, and brought the dance beat back to Jazz
Gilberto passed away last week at age of 88, in his life he left his mark on the music of Brazil and the world
The following are from the 1965 Grammy Jazz record of the year, Getz/Gilberto a collaboration between Gilberto and Jazz saxophonist Stan Getz
For a smooth mellow Monnday morning, enjoy.
João Gilberto is credited by some with writing the first bossa nova, or new beat. This mid-20th century musical gift to the world drew on Brazil’s African-influenced samba tradition, but was performed without the usual battery of drums and rhythm instruments, and at much lower volumes. Gilberto’s intimate and nuanced style of guitar playing and singing, eventually central to the bossa nova sound, were reportedly developed in 1955 when he sequestered himself inside of a bathroom at his sister’s house so as not to disturb her family and to take advantage of the acoustics provided by the bathroom tiles.
In the mid-1950s, Brazil was in the midst of a post-WWII modernization inspired by a new president who wished to move the country out of third world economic status. Gilberto’s “Bim-Bom,” often named as the first bossa nova song, came from that period, and soon thereafter, the style began to sweep Rio’s cafe’s and bars. Bossa nova’s sophisticated sound became popular with a new moneyed class eager to move away from the more traditional samba sound of explosive drums and group singing. Rio de Janeiro was ground zero of the country’s cultural explosion; Gilberto, composer Antonio Carlos Jobim and poet Vinicius de Moraes were the key architects of a culture shift that forever changed their country’s musical point of reference.