"Astrud was the true girl who brought bossa nova from Ipanema to the world. She was the pioneer and the best. At the age of 22, she lent her voice to the English version of 'Garota de Ipanema' and gained international fame," Sofia Gilberto said about her grandmother, who was the wife of João Gilberto, another music figure.
The singer, who had been living in the United States since the 1960s, was arguably the most recognized English voice of bossa nova, giving voice to the melodies of the genre's main composers, such as Tom Jobim and Vinicius de Moraes.
Her unmistakable voice has been indelibly associated with classics like 'Garota de Ipanema,' 'Corcovado,' 'Manha de Carnaval,' 'Agua de beber,' or 'Mas que nada.'
With the English version 'Girl of Ipanema,' recorded in 1963 with João Gilberto on guitar and Stan Getz on saxophone, she immortalized that song in the United States and won the Grammy Award in 1965, becoming the first Brazilian artist to receive the award.
Born in 1940 in Salvador, the capital of the state of Bahia, Astrud Gilberto released several solo albums throughout her career, with highlights including 'The Astrud Gilberto Album' (1965) and 'Look to the Rainbow' (1966).
Her music blended bossa nova with jazz, pop, and Brazilian popular music (MPB), creating a distinctive and elegant sound that influenced several generations of musicians.
She married singer, guitarist, and composer João Gilberto in 1960, who was also one of the biggest names in bossa nova and passed away in 2019. Astrud spent most of her life in the United States, and in recent decades, she lived away from music.
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