When most people think of Brazilian music, they perhaps don’t think of smooth and dreamy ’80s sounds. During that decade, MPB (Música Popular Brasileira) was perhaps best exemplified by the melodramatic power ballads of Roberto Carlos, or the New Wave-inflected rock of Cazuza. However, just away from the mainstream, many Brazilian musicians were trying to keep the understated, introspective spirit of Bossa Nova alive, filtering it through funk, soul and modern pop.
Some of these artists had been active since the birth of Bossa Nova. One such musician was the brilliant Marcos Valle, whose collaborations with the masterful Detroit songwriter Leon Ware (described here) mark, for me, the pinnacle of Brazilian music in the ’80s.
Some, such as Djavan, achieved huge commercial success producing this kind of music in the 1980s. However, in general I feel that this is a somewhat neglected strand of Brazilian musical history, which I have tried to give a taste of in the mix below.
You can stream the mix or download it here.
- Jorge Ben – Lorraine (1981)
- Marcos Valle – Não Pode Ser Qualquer Mulher (1981)
- Emilio Santiago – Velas Içadas (1982)
- Robson Jorge & Lincoln Olivetti – Squash (1982)
- Marcos Valle – Para Os Filhos De Abraão (1983)
- Tim Maia – Rio Mon Amour (1983)
- Djavan – Transe (1984)
- Yana Purim – Diana (1984)
- Joyce And Milton Nascimento – Tema Para Jobim (1985)
- Nana Caymmi – Copacabana (1985)
- Marcos Valle – Um Tempo Musical (1986)
- Djavan – Doidice (1987)
I’ll leave you with another Marcos Valle song, whose video pretty much sums up everything I love about this period, this country and this music!