|Cultural origins||Late 1950s, South Zone of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil|
Bossa nova (Portuguese pronunciation: [ˈbɔsɐˈnɔvɐ] ) is a relaxed style of samba developed in the late 1950s and early 1960s in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. ⓘ It is mainly characterized by a "different beat" that altered the harmonies with the introduction of unconventional chords and an innovative syncopation of traditional samba from a single rhythmic division. The "bossa nova beat" is characteristic of a samba style and not of an autonomous genre. The bossa nova wave became popular around the world; this increased popularity helped to renew samba and contributed to the modernization of Brazilian music in general.
According to Brazilian journalist Ruy Castro, the bossa beat – which was created by the drummer Milton Banana – was "an extreme simplification of the beat of the samba school", as if all instruments had been removed and only the tamborim had been preserved.In line with this thesis, musicians such as Baden Powell, Roberto Menescal, and Ronaldo Bôscoli also claim that this beat is related to the tamborim of the samba school. One of the major innovations of bossa nova was the way to synthesize the rhythm of samba on the classical guitar. According to musicologist Gilberto Mendes, the bossa nova was one of the "three rhythmic phases of samba", in which the "bossa beat" had been extracted by João Gilberto from the traditional samba. According to the author Walter Garcia, the synthesis performed by Gilberto's guitar was a reduction of the "batucada" of samba, a stylization produced from one of the percussion instruments: the thumb stylized a surdo; the index, middle and ring fingers phrased like a tamborim.
In Brazil, the word bossa is old-fashioned slang for something done with particular charm, natural flair or innate ability. As early as 1932, Noel Rosa used the word in a samba:
The phrase bossa nova means literally "new trend" or "new wave" in Portuguese. The exact origin of the term bossa nova remained unclear for many decades, according to some authors. Within the artistic beach culture of the late 1950s in Rio de Janeiro, the term bossa was used to refer to any new "trend" or "fashionable wave". In his book Bossa Nova, Brazilian author Ruy Castro asserts that bossa was already in use in the 1950s by musicians as a word to characterize someone's knack for playing or singing idiosyncratically. Castro claims that the term bossa nova might have first been used in public for a concert given in 1957 by the Grupo Universitário Hebraico do Brasil ('Hebrew University Group of Brazil'). The authorship of the term bossa nova is attributed to the then-young journalist Moyses Fuks, who was promoting the event. That group consisted of Sylvia Telles, Carlos Lyra, Nara Leão, Luiz Eça, Roberto Menescal, and others. Mr Fuks's description, fully supported by most of the bossa nova members, simply read "HOJE. SYLVIA TELLES E UM GRUPO BOSSA NOVA" ("Today. Sylvia Telles and a 'Bossa Nova' group"), since Sylvia Telles was the most famous musician in the group at that time. In 1959, Nara Leão also participated in more than one embryonic display of bossa nova. These include the 1st Festival de Samba Session, conducted by the student union of Pontifícia Universidade Católica . This session was chaired by Carlos Diegues (later a prominent Cinema Novo film director), a law student whom Leão ultimately married.
In 1959, the soundtrack to the film Black Orpheus (Orpheu Negro) was released, which included the future jazz standard Manhã de Carnaval, "The Morning of the Carnival". The bossa nova wave came to renew samba and to contribute to the modernization of Brazilian music, being a watershed.The style emerged at the time when samba-canção was the dominant rhythm in the Brazilian music scene. Its first appearance was on the album Canção do Amor Demais , in which the singer Elizeth Cardoso recorded two compositions by the duo Antônio Carlos Jobim and Vinicius de Moraes, "Outra Vez" and "Chega de Saudade", which were accompanied by João Gilberto's guitar. It was the first time that the Bahian musician presented the beat of his guitar that would become characteristic of the style. By accompanying Cardoso's voice, Gilberto innovated in the way of pacing the rhythm, accentuating the weak times, in order to carry out a synthesis of the beat of samba to guitar.
In 1959, João Gilberto's bossa album was released, containing the tracks "Chega de Saudade" and "Bim Bom".Considered the landmark of the birth of bossa nova, it also featured Gilberto's innovative way of singing samba, which was inspired by Dorival Caymmi. With the LP Chega de Saudade , released in 1959, Gilberto consolidated the bossa nova as a new style of playing samba. His innovative way of playing and singing samba, combined with the harmonies of Antônio Carlos Jobim and the lyrics of Vinicius de Moraes, found immediate resonance among musicians who were looking for new approaches to samba in Rio de Janeiro, many of them were influenced by American jazz. In 1964 João Gilberto and Stan Getz released "Getz/Gilberto" album. Then, it emerged an artistic movement around Gilberto and others professional artists such as Jobim, Moraes and Baden Powell, among others, which attracted young amateur musicians from the South Zone of Rio – such as Carlos Lyra, Roberto Menescal, Ronaldo Bôscoli and Nara Leão. Jorge Ben wrote "Mas que Nada" in 1963, and Sergio Mendes & Brazil 66 gained bosa rock hit "Mas que Nada" in 1966. It was inducted to the Latin Grammy Hall of Fame. In 1960s, US jazz artists such as Stan Getz, Hank Mobley, Zoot Sims, Paul Winter and Quincy Jones recorded bossa jazz albums.
Bossa nova also made its influence in popular music in the late 1960’s. A notable example is the song Break on Through (To the Other Side) by american rock band The Doors, especially the drum beat. Drummer John Densmore has stated that he was very influenced by the sounds of Brazil when coming up with the drum part for the song.
Bossa nova is most commonly performed on the nylon-string classical guitar, played with the fingers rather than with a pick. Its purest form could be considered unaccompanied guitar with vocals, as created, pioneered, and exemplified by João Gilberto. Even in larger, jazz-like arrangements for groups, there is almost always a guitar that plays the underlying rhythm. Gilberto basically took one of the several rhythmic layers from a samba ensemble, specifically the tamborim, and applied it to the picking hand. According to Brazilian musician Paulo Bitencourt, João Gilberto, known for his eccentricity and obsessed by the idea of finding a new way of playing the guitar, sometimes locked himself in the bathroom, where he played one and the same chord for many hours in a row.
As in samba, the surdo plays an ostinato figure on the downbeat of beat one, the "ah" of beat one, the downbeat of beat two and the "ah" of beat two. The clave pattern sounds very similar to the two-three or three-two son clave of Cuban styles such as mambo but is dissimilar in that the "two" side of the clave is pushed by an eighth note. Also important in the percussion section for bossa nova is the cabasa, which plays a steady sixteenth-note pattern. These parts are easily adaptable to the drum set, which makes bossa nova a rather popular Brazilian style for drummers.
Certain other instrumentations and vocals are also part of the structure of bossa nova. These include:
Bossa nova has at its core a rhythm based on samba. Samba combines the rhythmic patterns and feel originating in former African slave communities. Samba's emphasis on the second beat carries through to bossa nova (to the degree that it is often notated in 2/4 time). However, unlike samba, bossa nova has no dance steps to accompany it.When played on the guitar, in a simple one-bar pattern, the thumb plays the bass notes on 1 and 2, while the fingers pluck the chords in unison on the two eighth notes of beat one, followed by the second sixteenth note of beat two. Two-measure patterns usually contain a syncopation into the second measure. Overall, the rhythm has a "swaying" feel rather than the "swinging" feel of jazz. As bossa nova composer Carlos Lyra describes it in his song "Influência do Jazz", the samba rhythm moves "side to side" while jazz moves "front to back". Bossa nova was also influenced by the blues, but because the most famous bossa novas lack the 12-bar structure characteristic of classic blues, as well as the statement, repetition and rhyming resolution of lyrics typical of the genre, bossa nova's affinity with the blues often passes unnoticed.
Aside from the guitar style, João Gilberto's other innovation was the projection of the singing voice. Prior to bossa nova, Brazilian singers employed brassy, almost operatic styles. Now, the characteristic nasal vocal production of bossa nova is a peculiar trait of the caboclo folk tradition of northeastern Brazil.
The lyrical themes found in bossa nova include women, love, longing, homesickness, nature. Bossa Nova was often apolitical. The musical lyrics of the late 1950s depicted the easy life of the middle to upper-class Brazilians, though the majority of the population was in the working class. In conjunction with political developments of the early 1960s (especially the 1964 military coup d'état), the popularity of bossa nova was eclipsed by Música popular brasileira , a musical genre that appeared around the mid-1960s, featuring lyrics that were more politically charged and focused on the working class struggle.
Bossa nova was also a fad dance that corresponded to the music. It was introduced in the late 1950s and faded out in the mid-sixties. [ unreliable source? ] Bossa nova music, with its soft, sophisticated vocal rhythms and improvisations, is well suited for listening but failed to become dance music despite heavy promotion in the 1960s. The style of basic dance steps suited the music well. It was danced on "soft" knees that allowed for sideways sways with hip motions and it could be danced both solo and in pairs. About ten various simple step patterns were published.
A variant of basic 8-beat pattern was: "step forward, tap, step back, step together, repeat from the opposite foot". A variation of this pattern was a kind of slow samba walk, with "step together" above replaced by "replace". Box steps of rhumba and whisk steps of nightclub two step could be fitted with bossa-nova styling. Embellishments included placing one arm onto one own's belly and waving another arm at waist level in the direction of the sway, possibly with a finger click.[ citation needed ]
Antônio Carlos Brasileiro de Almeida Jobim, also known as Tom Jobim, was a Brazilian composer, pianist, guitarist, songwriter, arranger, and singer. Considered one of the great exponents of Brazilian music, Jobim internationalized bossa nova and, with the help of important American artists, merged it with jazz in the 1960s to create a new sound, with popular success. As a result, he is sometimes known as the "father of bossa nova".
Carlos Eduardo Lyra Barbosa is a Brazilian singer and composer of numerous bossa nova and Música popular brasileira classics. He and Antonio Carlos Jobim, were the first two music composers, together with lyricists Vinicius de Moraes and Ronaldo Boscoli, to be recorded by João Gilberto on his first LP entitled Chega de Saudade (1959), which was called the first generation of Bossa Nova.
João Gilberto was a Brazilian guitarist, singer, and composer who was a pioneer of the musical genre of bossa nova in the late 1950s. Around the world, he was often called "father of bossa nova"; in his native Brazil, he was referred to as "O Mito" . In 1965, the album Getz/Gilberto was the first jazz record to win the Grammy Award for Album of the Year. It also won Best Jazz Instrumental Album – Individual or Group and Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical.
Marcus Vinícius da Cruz e Mello Moraes, better known as Vinícius de Moraes and nicknamed O Poetinha, was a Brazilian poet, diplomat, lyricist, essayist, musician, singer, and playwright. With his frequent and diverse musical partners, including Antônio Carlos Jobim, his lyrics and compositions were instrumental in the birth and introduction to the world of bossa nova music. He recorded numerous albums, many in collaboration with noted artists, and also served as a successful Brazilian career diplomat.
Getz/Gilberto is an album by American saxophonist Stan Getz and Brazilian guitarist João Gilberto, featuring pianist and composer Antônio Carlos Jobim, who also composed many of the tracks. It was released in March 1964 by Verve Records. The album features the vocals of Astrud Gilberto on two tracks, "Garota de Ipanema" and "Corcovado". The artwork was done by artist Olga Albizu. Getz/Gilberto is a jazz and bossa nova album and includes tracks such as "Desafinado", "Corcovado", and "Garota de Ipanema". The last received a Grammy Award for Record of the Year and started Astrud Gilberto's career. "Doralice" and "Para Machucar Meu Coração" strengthened Gilberto's and Jobim's respect for the tradition of pre-bossa nova samba.
Luiz Floriano Bonfá was a Brazilian guitarist and composer. He was best known for the music he composed for the film Black Orpheus.
Chega de Saudade is the debut album by Brazilian musician João Gilberto and is often credited as the first bossa nova album. The title can be translated roughly as "enough with longing", though the Portuguese word saudade carries with it more complex meaning.
Nara Lofego Leão was a Brazilian bossa nova and MPB singer and occasional actress. Her husband was Carlos Diegues, director and writer of Bye Bye Brasil.
Roberto Menescal is a Brazilian composer, record producer, guitarist, vocalist, and pioneer of bossa nova. In many of his songs there are references to the sea, including his best-known composition "O Barquinho". He is also known for work with Carlos Lyra, Nara Leão, Wanda Sá, Ale Vanzella, and many others. Menescal has performed in Latin music genres such as Música popular brasileira, bossa nova, and samba. He was nominated for a Latin Grammy for his work with his son's bossa group Bossacucanova in 2002 and received the 2013 Latin Recording Academy Special Awards in Las Vegas in November 2013.
Canção do Amor Demais is 1958 album by Elizete Cardoso. It is often considered the first bossa nova album, and contains the first recordings of João Gilberto's guitar beat, which would go on to become a staple of bossa nova. Gilberto played guitar on "Chega de Saudade" and "Outra Vez".
João Donato de Oliveira Neto was a Brazilian jazz and bossa nova pianist as well as a trombonist from Rio Branco. He first worked with Altamiro Carrilho and went on to perform with Antonio Carlos Jobim and Astrud Gilberto. Because of the area he grew up in Brasil he was able to hear Cuban music on the radio. This influence would manifest itself in many of his compositions, piano, and trombone playing. Donato's most well-known compositions include: "Amazonas", "Lugar Comum", "Simples Carinho", "Até Quem Sabe" and "Nasci Para Bailar".
Silvia D'Atri Telles was a Brazilian jazz Samba and Bossa Nova singer and composer of the 1950s and 1960s, considered one of the major artists of Bossa Nova and MPB. Most of her original recordings are out of print, though occasional compilations are released.
Dez Anos Depois is a 1971 double album of bossa nova standards by Brazilian singer Nara Leão.
Ugo Marotta is a Brazilian musician, conductor, arranger, composer, keyboardist and vibraphonist. He took part at the Brazilian music movements Bossa Nova and Musicanossa.
Agostinho dos Santos was a Brazilian singer and composer of bossa nova, MPB and rock and roll, active from the early 1950s until his premature death in the crash of Varig Flight 820 in 1973, at the age of 41.
Bossa Nova: New Brazilian Jazz is an album by Argentine composer, pianist and conductor Lalo Schifrin recorded in 1962 and released on the Audio Fidelity label. The album was released during the height of the popularity of bossa nova music in the early 1960s and was one of Schifrin's earliest solo albums after leaving Dizzy Gillespie's band.
This is a list of published recordings of Antônio Carlos Jobim.
"Once I Loved" is a bossa nova and jazz standard song composed in 1960 by Antônio Carlos Jobim, with lyrics by Vinícius de Moraes. Words in English were later added by Ray Gilbert. In a few early cases, the song was also known as, a translation into English of the original Portuguese title.
"Só Danço Samba" is a bossa nova song composed in 1962 by Antônio Carlos Jobim, with lyrics by Vinicius de Moraes. English lyrics were later written by Norman Gimbel. On occasion, it has also been known as "Jazz Samba" and "I Only Dance Samba", an English translation of the original Portuguese title.
"A felicidade" ("Happiness") is a bossa nova song by Antônio Carlos Jobim, with lyrics by Vinícius de Moraes, composed in 1958 for the French film Orfeu Negro.
Origin and Etymology: Portuguese, literally, 'new trend'. First Known Use: 1962