Sunday, September 18, 2016

A Flood of Emotion: Antonio Carlos Jobim and Elis Regina with "Águas de Março"

Today's song is by a giant of Brazilian music who is credited with developing the bossa nova style and a woman who, at the time of the recording, was considered Brazil's greatest living vocalist. Águas de Março (Waters of March) was written by Jobim as a series of images inspired by flooding streets during a rainstorm. On the strength of songs like this, and his most famous song Garota de Ipanema (The Girl from Ipanema), his music crossed over from Brazil into the jazz repertoire of the United States. He collaborated with such jazz icons such as Stan Getz and Joao Gilberto and ushered a bossa nova craze into American culture. Elis Regina died at the age of 36 from an accidental drug overdose. She is widely considered to be one of Brazil's greatest singers, moving from bossa nova in the 1960s to tropicalismo in the 1970s. She was often at odds with the Brazilian dictatorship, insulated in part by her great popularity. Her funeral procession was followed by more than 100,000 people through the streets of Sao Paolo, all singing her songs. You can find Águas de Março on the 1990 album Bossa Nova - Trinta Anos Depois.