BY BRUNA COSTA
Discovering music from different nationalities is like travelling without leaving your home! To help out, we’ve listed some Brazilian artists to listen to if you want to experience a sampling of what the country has to offer. The land of awesome parties, soccer, beautiful beaches, and welcoming people has tons of amazing bands and artists as well. Check out our top 10!
1. Seu Jorge
This Brazilian actor, singer, and songwriter is definitely a must-listen if you want to know what’s happening in the contemporary samba universe. Born and raised in a favela, Seu Jorge changed his life by creating a new soulful music style that mixes samba, rock, and soul. Already acclaimed in Brazil, he released his last album, Seu Jorge & Almaz, in the U.S. in 2010, when he also toured around many cities in the country.
Only a few songwriters describe Brazil with such beautiful lyrics and melodies the way Chico Buarque does. This 70-year-old man is still one of the most famous artists in his country, and writes powerful songs that describe different ages of Brazilian history. Buarque is a great example of Brazilian popular music known in Portuguese as MPB, an old music style created many years ago that still has the power to reveal the Brazilian soul more than any other style can.
3. Banda do Mar
Banda do Mar (or Band from the Sea, in Portuguese) is a young trio that was formed in 2013. The group’s unique, hard to define style style is high-spirited, modest, and clear. Although the melodies may be modest, the trio’s schedule is definitely not, as it includes a tour around Brazil with a stop at the next edition of Lollapalooza, which will take place this month in São Paulo.
Emicida is one of the biggest revelations of underground hip-hop in Brazil and offers listeners a great way to dive into the Brazilian rap universe. Also known as the “Ambassador of the Streets,” he creates critical songs that aim to show the reality of poverty and racial discrimination in Brazil. Emicida has built a successful career in his country and abroad, being rewarded with many musical awards and performances in big festivals, such as the Brazilian edition of SWU and Coachella, where he performed in 2011.
Here is another great Brazilian rapper to check out. This 28-year-old started at a very young age, but only last year became very popular in Brazil. His most famous song, “Mulher” (woman, in Portuguese), was listed as one of the most played songs in the country last year, and is a good example of his rapping style. Just like Emicida, Projota also raps about the poverty reality in Brazil, though most of his songs have both a pop influence and a romantic hint.
This Brazilian rock singer has collected several awards, some best-selling albums, and millions of views on YouTube. Pitty has released seven albums since she started her solo career in 2003, and is always present on the lineup of the largest Brazilian music festivals. This year, she will perform at Lollapalooza.
This duo is one of the most famous interpreters of the new Brazilian country music, a style known as sertanejo universitário, which is probably the most popular music style among the young people in Brazil right now. This style of music can be heard everywhere: at nightclubs, festivals, bars, Carnival parties, and any other social event you can imagine. Every Brazilian, or people who have attended some parties in the country in the past few years, know what we are talking about. The most famous international artist in this style is the singer Michel Teló, but if you want to explore a newer take on the music, the romantic duo of Jorge & Mateus is definitely a good pick.
8. Luan Santana
Luan Santana is another good example of how big the sertanejo music is in Brazil today. This young fellow is 24 years old and has already collected some bestselling albums, music awards, YouTube views, and millions of young fans spread around the entire country. He is like a Brazilian teenage popstar and performs in the U.S. and in Europe frequently as well. Not everyone views Santana’s work positively in Brazil, but we definitely can’t deny how famous he is.
This one is for the Carnival lovers. Monobloco is a percussion group famous for performing during the street Carnival in Rio de Janeiro. Like many contemporary samba artists, this group is very popular among young people for mixing other music styles to the original samba beat.
Last but not least, we picked a popular pagode artist. Pagode is a very popular subgenre of samba that is often used to brighten up beach parties, especially in Rio de Janeiro. If you’ve never listened to it before, Thiaguinho is a great place to start. His songs are full of energy and usually emphasize the party mood that Brazilians are famous for.