Sergio Mendes & Brasil ‘66

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Contributor: Paul F. Newman

The A&M LPs of Sergio Mendes and Brasil ‘66 were sung half in English and half Brazilian Portuguese; the group and the singers were usually a mixture of the two cultures as were the tracks on their records. The Brazilian music that hit the globe in the 1960s under the general heading of Bossa Nova found much of its popularity through the creative efforts of Sergio Mendes. After the first hit, Mas Que Nada, it was realised that a song sung totally in Brazilian did not impede its acceptance in the English-speaking world if the music was good, and that remained true with all Sergio Mendes’ output. In general to Anglo Saxon ears slow songs where the lyrics needed to be appreciated were best sung in English and fast samba and carnival songs best in Brazilian. Typically there is a mixture of both in my ten favourites above.


Official Sergio Mendes Website

Sergio Mendes and Brasil ’66 biography (iTunes)

Their biggest hit, Mas Que Nada (see clip), was a cover of Jorge Ben’s 1963 song. Any fans of Mr Ben like to set that record straight from among his many albums, please get in touch. Sergio Mendes – and Brasil ’77 – Brasil ’88 – anybody out there want to bring us up to date?

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1 Comment

  1. John Chamberlain
    Aug 10, 2013

    No mention has been made of the lovely ladies! This probably could be another thread sometime as there are quite a few to discuss over the years. I loved Lani Hall and Gracinha Laporace. GL appeared with Bossa Rio, a spin off from Brasil ’66, in a 1970 Album produced by Sergio Mendes. She is, of course, the wife of SM.

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