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  • Brit bossa

    Are there any good Brazilian-influenced British records before the 80s?

    It seems weird to me that there doesn´t seem to be much. In France you had Pierre Barouh, Une Homme et une Femme, Tania Maria, and a bunch of other exiles, with France Gall, Serge and many others adopting the style.In Italy Morricone and dozens of other film composers adopted it to their vocabulary, as did a decent selection of pop artists. Germany and Scandinavia also had their waves, and even Japan seems to have shown much more interest than the UK.

    America made Sergio Mendes rich and plenty of Brazilian musicians made a living there, with jazzers actively seeking them out.

    In the UK Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil lived and played in London yet left barely a trace. I can think of Tony Hatch doing a few decent loungey covers and please don´t post Duncan Lamont again.Even Sergio Mendes didn´t have a top 40 hit before this century. You find lps by Mendes, Bonfa, Jobim etc in charity shops, but they don't seem to have registered much in terms of influence.

    On the other hand the jazz dance/acid jazz/nu jazz scene from the mid-80s on may perhaps have contributed to a lot of the nu-bossa stuff, although I reckon Germans, Belgians and then Brazilians were much more enthusiastic.
    Vardy.....¡¡¡PELIGRO!!!

  • #2


    Quite like this one.

    I've looked for more before, there ain't much. David Whitaker and Johnny Keating are involved iirc.

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    • #3
      Discussion of this album here before focussed on this track. Prompted me to buy. But for me this turns out to be just the 'obvious' track. There are a number of tracks there that are as strong, but more subtle.

      I am ready to be told that they aren't strictly bossa.

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      • #4

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        • #5
          Originally posted by alanmck View Post
          I was waiting for you to chip in with this one Al.

          To me Brit and bossa means Dudley Moore:

          dangerous age



          field day for Shirley



          the millionaire



          then there's also - Phil Woods



          and Robin Jones

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          • #6
            Originally posted by babycart View Post
            Are there any good Brazilian-influenced British records before the 80s?
            'It's OK, Lamont. Put your track suit back on, I'm keeping you on the bench today. Parnell!...Oi!...over here!..."



            Well BC, you left me little other option. To be honest, I think your post is a fair summation although I'd be happy to be proved wrong. Mendes and Jobim were genuinely popular here but I think the stranglehold that A&M had on this scene and the way they marketed it made most Britons think of bossa nova as just a slightly more exotic outpost of the American west coast easy listening experience. It's worth bearing in mind that a lot of their record sales came via budget labels and as these didn't qualify for the album charts, much evidence of that popularity is hidden.

            Thinking back, 'bossa nova', to most, wasn't even considered as something specifically Brazilian and tended to get lumped in with the general tag 'Latin-American', which in it's ignorance might as easily have extended to Herb Alpert, The Baja Marimba Band or on a really good day maybe Lalo Schifrin. Having established a certain style, bossa was free to be appropriated by the easy listening crowd and there are few artists of this ilk who didn't stick their snout in the nosebag on at least one occasion. That said, I imagine there was probably a small coterie (probably jazzers) who understood some of the finer cultural points of bossa nova and reflected this in their work, but there's others on here who will know more about that, I'm sure!*

            I think it's fairly well established that continental Europe generally had a more open-eared approach to different styles of music from other parts of the world, but Britain with it's own booming music scene and a stubborn imperial outlook was always rather more aloof. There, and I didn't even mention football....

            * And they all chipped in quicker than me!
            you can hear colours when they rhyme...

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            • #7
              Perhaps there is something about the Bossa never really reverberated with a Britian's weird Empire related relationship with exotica? It never quite got the slinky, sexy confidence of Bossa in comparison with more regimented latin steps. You get kind this British stiffness on some of the 45 attempts at 'doing a Bossa'. This, by Steve Race sounds like a proto drum machine (you'll have to go to halfway through the Youtube vid for the B-Side, 'Here and Now'):



              There's definitely an Acker Bilk single. I don't know what that sounds like. And a Dankworth one I'd be interested in hearing.

              Johnny Gregory did this and I'm sure a few others. This is definitely from the early 60s as I have the single.

              As to vocal ones, probably Eartha Kitt's Love For Sale which was a British release on Columbia and backed by Tony Osborne. Here is the WRC sleeve



              I've heard the Brit Bossa heat is here. It's impossible to get hold of though.
              Spirit Duplicator—collectable, charming, affordable... and also socially networked on FB / Twitter / Instagram.

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              • #8
                http://www.discogs.com/Johnny-Scott-...elease/2576095
                Drastically reduced to 72p

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by giantchicken View Post

                  Thinking back, 'bossa nova', to most, wasn't even considered as something specifically Brazilian and tended to get lumped in with the general tag 'Latin-American',
                  I think that´s definitely true.
                  I also wonder if the popularity of reggae in the UK might have had something to do with it. Maybe Brits were just looking elsewhere for sunshine music.

                  I´d thought of Dudley Moore, but the rest are new to me. Toy Piano Bossa Nova is great, but David Whitaker always seems to have had at least one foot across the channel.
                  Vardy.....¡¡¡PELIGRO!!!

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by babycart View Post
                    I´d thought of Dudley Moore, but the rest are new to me.
                    here's the best tune off the Vic Lewis LP:

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by eine View Post
                      Perhaps there is something about the Bossa never really reverberated with a Britian's weird Empire related relationship with exotica? It never quite got the slinky, sexy confidence of Bossa in comparison with more regimented latin steps.
                      Bang right there, fella - it's that ballroom dancing style 'formal attitude to informality' that sums it up nicely. That Steve Race 'b' side is that attitude made into music. Oh, and it may be the wrong thread, it may be the right thread, but here's the WRC Joao Gilberto record I own...rather lovely I reckon...

                      you can hear colours when they rhyme...

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by eine View Post

                        Nice but in this case I think I prefer the original cover:



                        I don't recall any bossa tracks on that album though, will have to re-visit - I usually play the title track which is great.

                        As for the Savile, that got spun by a guest DJ at Fickle Formula once (before all the revelations I might add).

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                        • #13
                          Given that Brit disco / soul / reggae took a while to take off despite all the kids listening to it when I was at school (late 60s to mid 70s) it's no real surprise that Brit bossa didn't do much.
                          some times play g+ with back noise,some times vg , super psyché juju lpfront sleeve is very nice vg back vg , but the top corne left is eating buy rats, ask for picture

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by eine View Post
                            Perhaps there is something about the Bossa never really reverberated with a Britian's weird Empire related relationship with exotica?
                            Were efforts concentrated on that sub-genre that we never really decided on a name for? Mid-Century Modern, maybe? Anyway, back on the new wave trip -



                            b-side to The Avengers theme.
                            SPIRIT DUPLICATOR Est 2015.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by ginghamkitchen View Post
                              Anyway, back on the new wave trip -



                              b-side to The Avengers theme.
                              Good call - forgot that one - cut nice and loud too.

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