Tuesday, April 09, 2013

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Luiz Bonfa

Artist:Luiz Bonfa w/Stan Getz
Song:Menina Flor
Album:Jazz Samba Encore!

Though not as well known as Antonio Carlos Jobim or Joao Gilberto, Luiz Bonfa was just as important to the development of Bossa Nova. And he was a big part of the 60s influx of Brazilian musicians to American jazz. He was born Jan. 17, 1922 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Bonfa studied with Uruguayan guitar master Isaias Savio and worked clubs in Rio as a singer for the Quitandinha Serenaders. And then he appeared on Brazilian radio. By the late 50s, he was touring the US with Mary Martin. But Bonfa's defining moment was when he was asked to contribute songs to the 1959 film Black Orpheus. The Bonfa composition Manha de Carnaval became a standard. In the 60s, sax player Stan Getz wanted to expose Brazilian music to US audiences. So he recorded a series of albums featuring Antonio Carlos Jobim, Joao Gilberto and Luiz Bonfa. Jazz Samba Encore! was the third of those five albums and was released in 1963. It features Bonfa and Jobim along with singer Maria Toledo who wrote Menina Flor with Bonfa. Jazz Samba Encore! is available as a budget CD. In the 60s, Bonfa worked with Quincy Jones, George Benson and Frank Sinatra among others. And one of his songs Almost In Love was performed by Elvis Presley in the 1968 film Live A Little, Love A Little. In the 70s, Bonfa returned to Brazil and continued to record and perform until his death on Jan. 12, 2001 at age 78. It's easy to overlook Luiz Bonfa but he was an important figure in Brazilian music. Here's Luiz Bonfa performing Menina Flor, Batucada and A Day In The Life Of A Fool on The Mike Douglas Show 1966 with Douglas singing at the end of the clip.

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