World Cup Playlist: The Quarterfinalists of Brazilian Music

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Steve Wiley is Up on the Sun's resident Record Store Geek. Biweekly, he shares stories of great music and whacky characters from his continuing 27 years in Valley record stores and the always-zany music biz.

Have you been watching the World Cup? Me too.

I'm a huge sports fan, but I only follow soccer during this one event, kind of like the Olympic sports. I'm not ready to trade in the NFL or MLB, but I'm looking forward to today's match between the U.S. and Belgium, and, whether our boys win or lose, the rest of the tourney. I've really been enjoying the sport, the crowds, and of course, the host country.

"Hold on, Geek, this is a music blog."

Don't worry, I've found a way to tie my temporary sporting obsession with my perpetual music obsession -- and my fondness for partying -- all in a manner that pleases my editor. Read on, and I'll list eight of the greatest albums in the history of Brazilian music, complete with a Spotify playlist.

Hey, if you are going to enjoy the game, why not have a party?

And you know what they say? When in Brazil, do what the Brazilians do.

So let's have a futebol party.

I can't properly analyze the sport. I can't cook you Brazilian food. But luckily, thanks to years of listening, and a number of wonderful influences, I can put together a list of great Brazilian music.

Truth be told, it's a joy to do so. I've got more than enough jazz, samba, and bossa nova classics in my world music collection, and it's some of the coolest music on the planet. So like always, I'll jam some and write you up a list.

The Quarterfinalists of Brazilian Music

OK, here are the rules of the list: 1) It has to be Brazilian music, but it doesn't have a be a Brazilian artist; 2) I have to own the album; and 3) These are in no particular order (except number 1).

8. Stan Getz/Joao Gilberto. Getz/Gilberto.
I have to start with the granddaddy of all the Brazilian albums here in the States. Getz/Gilberto introduced us to bossa nova, and the mighty Brazilian composer that is found on almost all of these albums, Antonio Carlos Jobim. It featured outstanding performances by saxophonist Getz and singer/guitarist Gilberto.

It also introduced us to Gilberto's wife, Astrud, who sang the classic "Girl From Ipanema," which even you might have heard, in her first-ever performance outside of her home. The record store elitist in me wanted to leave it off the playlist, because it's so obvious, but I couldn't. It just paints too great of a beach picture.

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3 comments
AlexBenson
AlexBenson

This is a really great article, thanks for posting! I'd love to see more like this - exploratory/educational international music playlists! Woop woop!

DavidBrazil
DavidBrazil

It's a nice selection Steve, and there is new generation of artists creating music of quality. You can listen to a few of them here - mixcloud.com/brazil. 

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