World music critic Milo Miles says the Brazilian style was seen as a mark of refinement for both Brazilian and American listeners. But it's this polish that can sometimes make the genre tiresome. Nonetheless, the new CD The Legendary Joao Gilberto is a worthwhile listen.
Brazilian singer/songwriter Caetano Veloso (kah-TAH-no vah-LOW-sah). He's revered as one of the primary architects of "tropicalismo," - a 1960's cultural and musical movement that reevaluated traditional Brazilian music and incorporated non-Brazilian musical styles. Leftist intellectuals denounced his music for it's use of foreign influences. In the late 1960's he was jailed and exiled from Brazil for his participation in the musical movement because the government feared the social force it might have.
Composer Antonio Carlos Jobim, who introduced America and Europe to bossa nova, the sensual, urbane musical idiom of Brazil. Before he started composing bossa novas in the 50s, he wrote symphonies, drawing from his training as a classical musician. His most widely circulated works include "The Girl from Ipanema" and "Desafinado."