Brazilian samba and bossa nova singer, Astrud Gilberto, who gained international fame with her mesmerizing rendition of “The Girl from Ipanema,” has left us, leaving a void in the music world. The news of her passing at the age of 83 has saddened fans worldwide. Astrud’s granddaughter, Sofia, shared the heartbreaking announcement on Instagram, stating that her grandmother had become a star and joined her grandfather, João Gilberto.
As we reflect on Astrud Gilberto’s remarkable career and the profound impact she had on the music industry, we pay tribute to the woman whose voice transported us to the enchanting shores of Ipanema. Also it is important to acknowledge the man who played a significant role in her life and the evolution of bossa nova music—her former husband, João Gilberto.
Introducing João Gilberto: A Musical Prodigy
João Gilberto, born in 1931, emerged as a musical prodigy, revolutionizing Brazilian popular music with his influential debut album, “Chega de Saudade,” in the late 1950s. Known for his unique guitar style and introspective vocals, João Gilberto became synonymous with the bossa nova genre. In 1959, he married Astrud Weinert, and their partnership would have a lasting impact on the world of music.
In 1963, João Gilberto embarked on a journey to New York City with Astrud, where they collaborated with renowned jazz artist Stan Getz and Brazilian bossa nova star Antônio Carlos Jobim. It was during this time that a momentous event unfolded. The producer of the session sought an English-language vocalist for a particular track, “The Girl from Ipanema.” Despite lacking prior recording experience, Astrud Gilberto was selected to lend her voice to the song.
Initially uncredited, Astrud’s solo rendition of “The Girl from Ipanema” took the world by storm in 1964. The song struck a chord with audiences and climbed the charts, earning critical acclaim and even winning a Grammy award. Astrud Gilberto’s mesmerizing voice and interpretation breathed new life into the track, propelling it to become an enduring classic. The success of “The Girl from Ipanema” not only catapulted Astrud to international stardom but also solidified her place in music history.
Often hailed as the “father of bossa nova” worldwide and known as “O Mito” in his native Brazil, João Gilberto’s legacy continues to inspire countless musicians even after his passing on July 6, 2019.
Know About Astrud And João Gilberto’s Divorce
Tragically, the musical partnership of Astrud and João Gilberto did not extend into their personal lives. The couple divorced in 1964, and while their marriage ended, their respective careers continued to flourish independently. Astrud Gilberto embarked on a successful solo career, captivating audiences with her enchanting voice, while João Gilberto continued to shape the world of music with his distinct guitar style and introspective vocals.
After their separation, Astrud Gilberto found love again, this time with her husband’s musical collaborator, jazz saxophonist Stan Getz. However, their relationship also came to an end, and Astrud eventually emigrated to the United States, where she settled in Philadelphia, maintaining a private life away from the spotlight. Her second marriage, to Nicholas LaSorsa, ended more than four decades ago, and she remained a figure of grace and elegance, forever etched in the hearts of her fans.
As we bid farewell to Astrud Gilberto, we remember her not only as a talented artist but also as a woman who ventured beyond the shadows of her former husband and carved her own path in the music industry. Her contributions to the world of bossa nova will forever be cherished, and her legacy will continue to inspire generations to come.
Rest in peace, Astrud Gilberto, the true girl who took bossa nova from Ipanema to the world. May your voice forever echo through the sands of time.