The late Oscar Castro-Neves often used this William Carlos Williams Quote:
"All that remains of communities and civilizations …
All that remains of their worth and dignity …
Exists in the art they leave."
August 2016 was that proverbial “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity” for Brazil music to be re-introduced to the world on the largest stage ever … at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics … before 3.6 Billion people.
The 1961 Stan Getz/Charlie Byrd recording of the great Antonio Carlos Jobim’s “A Desafinado” was the #1 most sold jazz single.
Then, in November 1962, Audio Fidelity Records and Showtime Magazine organized the first Bossa Nova concert at Carnegie Hall. Bossa Nova and Brazilian music in general thus became an established genre in the U.S. and in the rest of the world, recognized by its sophisticated harmonies, beautiful melodies and unique rhythms.
Then, the 1964 Stan Getz / Joao Gilberto album won the 1965 GRAMMY for Album of the Year, and Jobim’s "The Girl from Ipanema" won the 1965 GRAMMY for Record of the Year. That put Bossa Nova as the world's #1 popular music.
That same year (1965), Chicago-based Ramsey Lewis' "The In Crowd" was #1 on the Billboard R&B Chart, #2 on the Billboard Top 200 albums chart, and the album won the GRAMMY Award for Best Jazz album. The album included a rendition of the great Jobim's "Felicidade".
“Unfortunately” for Bossa Nova and Jazz … The Beatles were named GRAMMY 1965 Best New Artist (beating out both Antonio Carlos Jobim himself and Astrud Gilberto).
Thus 1964-1966 proved to be the high water mark for both Brazil music and American Jazz -- the point in time when "The British Invasion” of music supplanted Brazilian Music and American Jazz as the #1 music in the world.
Rio de Janeiro 2016 was both the 50th anniversary of this seminal time in world culture; and the moment for Brazil policy makers to honor a great Brazilian cultural legacy, and pave a way forward for the music...