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The Brazilian Sound: Samba, Bossa Nova, and the Popular Music of Brazil (Anglais) Broché – 20 décembre 2008

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

"Well informed, written in plain language and smartly illustrated, The Brazilian Sound quickly became a reference book after it was published in 1991. With the recent publication of a revised and expanded edition, the good just got better...The Brazilian Sound is an informative primer, clearly designed to be useful to the curious beginner, but also substantive enough to capture and hold the attention of the initiated. This new edition retains the easy-to-read quality of the original while adding not only new artists throughout but also historical and social context to the music.... For anyone interested in exploring the vast world of Brazilian music, The Brazilian Sound will serve nicely as a smart and practical road map." --Jazziz, February 2009

"An excellent resource on some of the most popular music in Brazil.... Clearly written and offering information valuable for understanding Brazilian music in general.... Anyone interested in the evolution of Brazilian popular music and some of its most prolific artists of the past centuries will appreciate this title. Summing Up: Highly recommended." --Choice, June 2009

Praise for the last edition: "[The Brazilian Sound] continues to be the most informative-and eminently readable-book about Brazilian popular music." --The Los Angeles Times

Présentation de l'éditeur

Brazilian music has exponentially increased in its popularity over the decade since the last edition of "The Brazilian Sound" was published. This revised and expanded edition includes discussions of developments in samba and other key genres, the rise of female singer-songwriters in recent years, new works by established artists like Milton Nascimento and Gilberto Gil and the mixing of bossa with electronica. This clearly written and lavishly illustrated encyclopaedic survey features dozens of new entries and photographs, an extensive glossary of Brazilian music terms and more. This edition of "The Brazilian Sound" contains new discussions of: musica sertaneja and musica caipira; Brazilian funk and rap/hip-hop; electronic dance music; young contemporary musicians inspired by traditional music; the rise of new samba artists; an updated bibliography and glossary; and, a new list of Web resources.

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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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Amazon.com: 15 commentaires
25 internautes sur 25 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Readable, enjoyable summary of Brazilian music 10 novembre 1999
Par Mom - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
An excellent book for anyone who wants to explore Brazilian music beyond the well-known classics. Helps place current and past musicians in their historical contexts; helps you understand who influenced whom, etc. The book will pay for itself just by helping you guide your ever-growing collection of Brazilian CD's (hard to stop once you get started)!
13 internautes sur 13 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Loved The Interviews & Quotes 26 mars 1999
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
"The Brazilian Sound" is a great read and very informative. I especially liked the quotes from the interviews the authors did with Brazilian musicians like Antonio Carlos Jobim, Milton Nascimento and Carlinhos Brown, as well as Americans such as Lyle Mays and Herbie Mann who have long been associated with Brazil's music.
11 internautes sur 11 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
The Bible of the Brazilian Music Scene 1 juin 1998
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
Of all world music varieties, Brazilian music is among the most vital, consistent and compelling. McGowan and Pessanha nail their subject cold in this book -- the most comprehensive omnibus available on the subject of Brazilian music. From MPB to Milton, it's all here!
This encyclopedic work includes hundreds of photos, complete historical information on all styles, and extended discographies ideal for starting and growing your own world-class Brazilian CD collection.
I picked this book up on a whim -- and 100 CDs later, I'm grateful to the authors for broadening my knowledge of this exceptional music with their extraordinary book!
8 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
The Brazilian Sound (3rd edition), by Chris McGowan & Ricardo Pessanha 14 novembre 2009
Par RHMMM - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
The Brazilian Sound (3rd edition), by Chris McGowan & Ricardo Pessanha

Review by Reeves Medaglia-Miller, Ph.D.

"In Brazil, music is everywhere. You can find it in a complex rhythmic pattern beaten out by an old man with his fingers on a café table, in the thundering samba that echoes in the streets of Rio in the months prior to Carnaval, and in the bars where a guitar passes from hand to hand and everyone knows all the lyrics to all the classic Brazilian songs played late into the night." (McGowan & Pessanha, 2009, p. 3)

Ethnomusicology... sounds like a really dry subject, right? A bunch of music that I don't understand, explained to me using a bunch of new jargon from some language that I don't understand... right? Wrong. In the brilliant grasp of Chris McGowan and Ricardo Pessanha, the study of the many forms of Brazilian popular music is fascinating, intimate, and, yes, even exciting... as it should be.

I am a lifelong music educator and professor of Popular Culture studies at George Brown College in Toronto. I am always in search of texts that will inspire and stimulate my already world-weary students to learn about vital musical forms of which they are unaware, even as they consider important social justice issues such as racism, cultural appropriation, sexism, classism, and so on. I need look no further than The Brazilian Sound.

The Brazilian Sound steps into a time machine and tells a five-hundred year old story of race and of a musical tradition forged from the forced merger of the Brazilian indigenous culture with the culture of its Portuguese conquerors and, then, with the culture of some five million African slaves brought to South America between 1538 and 1850. McGowan and Pessanha explain in compelling detail how the amazing diversity of popular music styles in Brazilian music culture is as a result of both blending and coexistence of many heritages, including at least three major African traditions, and many subcultures within those larger groups.

In the telling of this story, the authors reveal that today's Brazil is undoubtedly more racially tolerant than our North America, with inequities in society being attributable more to differences in class and economic status than to colour. This, they explain, is due to Brazilians seeing race as a "fluid continuum" of identity rather than as a "bipolar" model, the black and white colour scheme prevalent in America. Notably, the authors tell us that, in part due to the enormous scale of the African slave migration, African musical traditions survive in Brazil in a much "purer form" than those found in American music. Nevertheless, McGowan and Pessanha urge the reader to consider Daniel's (1992) assertion that the ugliness of racism "...is a serious problem about which most Brazilians are in perpetual denial."

It is this kind of bravery, tempered with a delicate sensitivity, that is omnipresent in McGowan and Pessanha's fine work, and makes this book invaluable to both music educators and social justice educators. In their thorough exploration of the context of Brazilian popular music, the authors are fearless in their efforts to discuss in full view the race issues surrounding the formation of post-conquest Brazil, issues that are still clearly present in contemporary Brazilian popular music. So, The Brazilian Sound is more than a routine anthropological work, and more than an emotionless ethnographic study. It is a book that speaks frankly and passionately about both the splendid diversity and the social paradoxes of Brazil.

From the early indigenous forms, through the 18th century Portuguese modinha and the concurrent arrival of the Bantu lundu, through the venerated samba, the internationally-popular Bossa Nova tradition (the "new way"), MPB (musica popular brasileira), Brazilian rock forms, and even all the way to contemporary Brazilian electronica, McGowan and Pessanha are meticulous in their devotion to detail. In addition to a remarkable array of data and research, the authors add tremendous depth (and credibility) to The Brazilian Sound through data obtained from their personal interviews of numerous superstars from Brazilian music traditions, including Almeida, Azevedo, Bosco, Brown, Caymmi, Costa, Jobim, Lee, Mendes, Menezes, Nascimento, Porto, and da Viola.

Initially published in 1991, and then again in 1998, The Brazilian Sound is now in its 3rd ("revised and expanded") edition. The new edition adds much that was not available to listeners only a decade ago, including discussion of new works by established composers. However, it is clear that much innovation, both musical and technological, has occurred in a single decade, and McGowan and Pessanha are painstaking in their quest to get us up to speed. In each of chapters seven through nine, important 21st century additions are made to the ongoing narratives of favourite performers and emerging styles, and new millennium artists and post-modern fusion styles are introduced to the scene. In "North by Northeast," the authors provide up-to-date information on the late 90s guitarrada style, and the subsequent technobrega style, that merged Vieira's guitarrada with brega paraense. In "Brazilian Instrumental Music and Jazz," we are updated on the newer post-2000 works of established performers Malta, Vasconcelos, Purim, Santos, and Uakti, but also introduced to beautiful jazz divas Ithamara Koorax and Luciana Souza. In "Tropical Rock," we learn that much has occurred in a brief ten years, including the "world outside Brazil" discovering the rock of Os Mutantes and a partial (sans Rita Lee) reunion of the band in 2006. We learn that Rita Lee herself went on to a post-Os Mutantes triumph ("3001") in 2000, winning a Latin Grammy. We hear the sad final power chords of both RPM and Titas and cry at the death of Cassia Eller, yet witness the rise of young bands Skank, Vanguart, and Los Hermanos.

All of these essential additions would be enough to justify a revised edition of The Brazilian Sound. The authors go on to provide an additional 10th chapter, "More Brazilian Sounds," describing other important genres. There is a fascinating discussion of sertaneja and caipira, the Brazilian equivalents of our C&W and old-time country traditions. It is compelling to learn that Brazil has an indigenous tradition, a Christian music tradition, and even reggae, funk, soul and R&B, hip hop, and electronica styles, just as we have here in North America.

Yet, as promised in my introduction, The Brazilian Sound is a work that not only informs, but also excites. It is filled with exquisite guided visualizations:

"On a hot and humid summer night in Rio de Janeiro, a small stage is packed with dozens of musicians holding assorted drums and percussion instruments, engaged in an escola de samba (samba school) rehearsal. They are inside a colourful, decorated pavilion crowded with people--black, white, brown--who all have one thing in common: the samba" (McGowan & Pessanha, 2009, p. 18).

Such vividly-written passages put the reader right there, seeing the context of the music for themselves, and practically hearing it, too. In a famous Twilight Zone episode, history students marvel at their teacher's seemingly first-hand knowledge of the subject matter, and suspect that he may actually have been present at these historical events. This is the feeling one gets while reading The Brazilian Sound--it is as if the authors were there, telling firsthand their impressions of an abundance of Brazilian history, popular music styles, and cultural achievements. And then, we are reminded that it is true: at least regarding much of the music and musicians of the past few decades, McGowan (a resident of Rio de Janeiro) and Pessanha were and are there, interviewing these music titans face-to-face. Thus, we are there as well, hearing da Viola's own feelings about his beloved music and heritage, or hearing Caymmi describe in his own words his unusual guitar technique. In this respect, The Brazilian Sound is not just an exciting carnaval or a colourful escola de samba. It is a rare gift... a unique privilege.

In my view, The Brazilian Sound is much more than a textbook filled with a vast wealth of information. It is among the most energetic, essential books available in the field of music studies... a joy from começo to conclusão.


Daniel, G. Reginald (1992). "Multiethnic Populations in the United States and Brazil," UCLA ISOP Intercom 14, no. 7 (January 15, 1992): 1-5.

McGowan, Chris, & Ricardo Pessanha (2009). The Brazilian Sound: Samba, Bossa Nova, and the Popular Music of Brazil, revised 3rd edition. Philadelphia: Temple University Press.
8 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
The best English-language overview of Brazilian music 11 novembre 2002
Par DJ Joe Sixpack - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
You could fill a book with all the information I _don't_ know about Brazilian music... In fact, these guys already have! Concise, conversational, informative and very well laid out, this is an exceptionally readable book. Chapters on samba, bossa nova, tropicalia, forro and jazz include focused biographical sketches of dozens of key artists, as well as succinct historical information about the progress of Brazilian music from its European and African folk roots into its bewildering and often beautiful modern offshoots. The book's focus is nonpartisan: although there is plenty of room for aesthetic criticism within the various styles, the authors generally hold their preferences and dislikes to themselves. They do, however, give readers a good sense of which recordings might be best to check out -- an invaluable service considering how little of Brazil's vast musical output makes it to the United States. Highly recommended! Certainly the best English-language guide to Brazilian pop that you will find in print (online is a different matter), this is great for casual listeners and hardcore fans alike.
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