Master Composers: Carlos Lyra continues to wow audiences throughout Brazil


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Throughout a career which has spanned over five decades, Carlos Eduardo Lyra Barbosa continues to dazzle audiences throughout Brazil and the world.

Born on May 11, 1939–he teamed up with Antonio Carlos Jobim (my first ever blog subject that I covered way back in 2012) on Joao Gilberto’s first bossa nova hit, “Chega de Saudade” in 1959.  He also was one of the first five founding members of the CPC group (Center of Popular Culture, similar to a Department of Cultural Affairs in your favorite metropolitan city or district).

My pick for the album of the week is a compilation of his best works from Red Cherry Records and is available at Amazon and other online outlets.

Plenty of the songs take on a very relaxing, yet calm pace.  This would be an excellent album to play at a dinner party or just kicking off your heels and/or boots (especially for many of those 85 million plus Americans who had to endure 36 hours of near constant snow during a major blizzard which paralyzed parts of 15 states along the East Coast on Friday afternoon all the way into early Sunday morning).

As far as picking a favorite song, it is tough to choose because they are all so good.  The really awesome tracks are at the end, when he teamed up with Sylvia Telles on Track 27 “Menina” (or simply translated as, “Girl”) and Joao Gilberto on Track 31 with “Lobo Bobo” (translated to “Foolish Wolf”).  Even better, most of the individual tracks last a little over two minutes in length each.

According to the Wikipedia page mentioning briefly about his career, he is still going strong today.  A more thorough look at his guitar work and his two trips to the United States while living in self-exile during Brazil’s coup d’etat during 1964 which continued into the early 1970’s.

By the time the most accurate history of the bossa nova movement is chronicled, I am pretty certain that the name of Carlos Lyra will be right up there with the best of the best, the cream of the crop, the top of the mountain.

Next week, I will spin the virtual time machine back to the 21st century and profile an artist who uses her album title as something we should do at least once every day–and that is smile:).

See you then.  And to our friends out East, take it easy and I hope you still have your power on and you have enough food to survive until all of the snow is cleared off the roads.


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