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Legendary Bossa Nova Singer Astrud Gilberto Who Sang “The Girl from Ipanema,” Passes Away at 83

Astrud Gilberto, the iconic Brazilian bossa nova singer renowned for her captivating rendition of “The Girl from Ipanema,” has sadly passed away at the age of 83. With a career spanning the 1960s and 70s, Gilberto recorded 16 albums and collaborated with esteemed artists such as Quincy Jones and George Michael. Her enchanting version of “The Girl from Ipanema” sold over five million copies, playing a pivotal role in popularizing the bossa nova genre.

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Image source : BBC

Astrud Gilberto Death

The news of Gilberto’s demise was shared by her granddaughter, Sofia Gilberto, on Instagram, while guitarist Paul Ricci also confirmed the loss. Astrud Gilberto leaves behind a profound musical legacy and a remarkable impact on Brazilian music.

A Pioneer and Musical Legend: Astrud Gilberto’s Journey

Astrud Evangelina Weinert, born in Bahia, Brazil, grew up surrounded by music, drawing inspiration from her musically inclined family. Joining a vibrant group of young musicians in her mid-teens, Gilberto found herself immersed in the creation of bossa nova alongside influential figures like Nara Leao and João Gilberto, who later became her husband.

From Accidental Vocalist to International Fame: The Girl from Ipanema

In a twist of fate, Gilberto’s career as a vocalist was sparked when she accompanied João Gilberto to New York as a translator during his recording session with renowned jazz artist Stan Getz. When the English version of “The Girl from Ipanema” required a vocalist, Gilberto shyly volunteered.

She was unaware that this would launch her to stardom. Her mesmerizing vocals perfectly captured the essence of the song and resonated with millions worldwide.

Struggles and Success: Gilberto’s Solo Career and Artistic Evolution

While initially uncredited on the track, Gilberto’s performance on “The Girl from Ipanema” propelled her into a successful solo career. Collaborating with esteemed jazz guitarist Antonio Carlos Jobim, she released her debut album, “The Astrud Gilberto Album,” in 1965.

It showcased her talent on a collection of Brazilian classics. Despite achieving fame, Gilberto faced objectification and misogyny in the music industry, a challenge she confronted throughout her career.

Beyond Music: Gilberto’s Acting and Humanitarian

Contributions Gilberto extended her artistic reach beyond music, venturing into acting and recording film soundtracks. She featured in movies such as “The Hanged Man” and “Get Yourself a College Girl,” and collaborated with Quincy Jones on the soundtrack for “The Deadly Affair.” Furthermore, Gilberto actively campaigned against animal cruelty, devoting her later years to this cause.

Legacy and Influence: Gilberto’s Lasting Impact on the Music World

Although Gilberto took an indefinite hiatus from public performances after her 2002 album, “Jungle,” her first recording continued to resonate with audiences worldwide. Her rendition of “The Girl from Ipanema” inspired numerous artists, including Frank Sinatra, Madonna, Amy Winehouse, and Nat King Cole, who all paid homage to her timeless performance.

Gilberto’s passing marks the end of an era, but her legacy will continue to inspire and shape the music world. Her contributions to bossa nova, her fight against misogyny, and her undeniable talent as a vocalist will forever be remembered.

Astrud Gilberto’s soulful voice and her iconic rendition of “The Girl from Ipanema” will continue to resonate with generations to come, ensuring that her impact on Brazilian music endures.

As the news of Astrud Gilberto’s passing spreads, the world mourns the loss of a musical legend. Fans and fellow artists alike pay tribute to her unique voice, her pioneering spirit, and the indelible mark she left on the music industry.

Gilberto’s contributions to bossa nova and her timeless recording of “The Girl from Ipanema” will forever be treasured, ensuring that her legacy lives on even as her voice falls silent.


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