Luiz Bonfá

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Bonfá (1962)

Luiz Floriano Bonfá (born October 17, 1922 in Rio de Janeiro ; † January 12, 2001 ibid) was a Brazilian composer , singer and guitarist and an important representative of bossa nova , a popular Brazilian music genre . In his long career he recorded over 50 albums. His most famous compositions include Manhã de Carnaval and Samba de Orfeu (both 1959) and the English-language The Gentle Rain (1965).


Luiz Bonfá grew up in Rio de Janeiro and initially learned to play the guitar autodidactically. At the age of twelve he received classical guitar lessons from Isaías Sávio . These weekly lessons were a long and time-consuming commute because Bonfá's childhood home was on the western outskirts of Rio de Janeiro and Sávio lived in the hills of Santa Teresa . In view of the great efforts and the extraordinary talent of his pupil, Sávio often refrained from paying for his services.

Bonfá first became known to a broader audience in Brazil when it was presented in 1947 on the Rádio Nacional in a program for young talent. He was also a member of the Quitandinha Serenaders vocal group in the late 1940s . In the 1950s, some of his compositions were interpreted and recorded by the Brazilian singer Dick Farney . Farney also introduced Bonfá to Antônio Carlos Jobim and Vinícius de Moraes , the leading songwriting team behind the global success of Brazilian bossa nova in the late 1950s and 1960s.

In 1956 Bonfá worked with these and other prominent Brazilian musicians and artists in the production Orfeu da Conceição by Vinícius de Moraes, which a few years later served Marcel Camus as a template for his legendary film Orfeu Negro (Black Orpheus) . Bonfá and Jobim provided the soundtrack for the 1959 film. The Manhã de Carnaval contained therein , which Bonfá had composed, developed into a jazz classic. Another well-known piece from the soundtrack was Samba de Orfeu .

In the 1960s, the bossa nova became known internationally. A major contributor to this was the 1962 Bossa Nova Festival at Carnegie Hall in New York , to which Bonfá was invited along with a number of other Brazilian artists, including João Gilberto , Oscar Castro-Neves and Sérgio Mendes . In January 1963 Bonfá traveled to Germany to record with Luiz Bonfá e Caterina Valente . With the singer Caterina Valente and the Addy Flor orchestra , he recorded a Portuguese and an Italian version of the Bossa Nova album in three days. Also in 1963 Bonfá recorded the album Jazz Samba Encore with Stan Getz , which is one of the highlights of the Bossa Nova.

In the mid-1960s, Bonfá, like many other musicians, left Brazil and went to the United States because the military coup of 1964 had completely changed the political and social climate in Brazil.

Bonfá stayed in the States until 1975, working with American artists such as Paul Winter , Quincy Jones , George Benson , Steve Lawrence and Frank Sinatra . For Elvis Presley he composed the title Almost In Love . He also recorded numerous solo albums, including the well-known The Brazilian Scene from 1966. Bonfá remained connected to the USA even after his return to Brazil, but was somewhat forgotten in the last few decades. His last album Almost in Love from 1996 was a collaboration with the Brazilian singer Ithamara Koorax . Bonfá died in 2001 at the age of 78 from complications from prostate cancer .


Solo albums

  • 1955: Luiz Bonfá
  • 1957: Alta Versatilidade
  • 1957: Violão Boêmio
  • 1958: Ritmos Continentais
  • 1958: Meu Querido Violão
  • 1959: Cupid! The Fabulous Guitar Of Luiz Bonfá
  • 1959: O Violão De Luiz Bonfá
  • 1962: O Violão EO Samba
  • 1962: Brazil's King of the Bossa Nova and Guitar
  • 1963: Plays And Sings Bossa Nova
  • 1963: Recado Novo De Luiz Bonfá
  • 1963: Violão Boêmio Vol.2
  • 1966: The Brazilian Scene
  • 1967: Luiz Bonfá
  • 1967: Luiz Bonfá Plays Great Songs
  • 1968: Black Orpheus Impressions
  • 1968: Bonfá
  • 1970: The New Face Of Luiz Bonfá
  • 1971: Sanctuary
  • 1972: Introspection
  • 1973: Jacarandá
  • 1974: Manhattan Strut
  • 1991: The Bonfá Magic
  • 1996: Sambolero
  • 2005: Solo In Rio 1959



Web links

Individual evidence

  3. ^ Hermann Vilser, Ingrid Grünwald: Caterina Valente Discography 1954–2000 . Hannibal, Höfen 2001, ISBN 3-85445-187-3