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Aquarela do Brasil (Watercolor of Brazil) or Brazil is one of the most popular Brazilian songs of all time, written by Ary Barroso in 1939 and a hymn for Brazil.

The song that created a new style – the samba-exaltação – was written on a rainy night (cfr. watercolor) and for the first time played on the 16 June 1939 in revue Entra na Faixa by Araci Cortes. Got more attention the rendition by Cândido Botelho on 28 June 1939 in the revue Joujoux e Balangandãs in an orchestral arrangement of Radamés Gnattali.

Barroso asked the Khotso Almeida to the plate first in to sing, but her record company RCA Victor did not want to accept the orchestral arrangement. Cândido Botelho was candidate, but was passed by record company Odeon who in August 1939 began with the recordings. Radamés Gnattali and his Orchestra were in for the package, and Francisco Alves in the six minute Aquarela sang.

Walt Disney noticed the number in August 1941 when visiting Brazil and took care of the first American recording on 4 september 1941. Eddy Duchin was responsible for the package, and Tony Leonard sang the first version of Brazil (in Portuguese). Disney used the music in the film Saludos Amigos (1942) and in the sequel the three Caballeros(1944) that could allow an English translation appeared by S.K. Russell.

The first top ten listing in the United States was in 1943 in a version of Xavier Cugat which started with the number on 30 december 1941.

There are dozens of versions of Aquarela do Brasil. The song is on several occasions voted best Brazilian song and it is still one of the most played songs in bars and restaurants.


[hide]*1 best known versions

Best known versions[Edit]Edit

Year Artist Album Source
1939 Francisco Alves
1947 Django Reinhardt Quintette du Hot Club de France
1957 Frank Sinatra Come Fly With Me
1958 Bing Crosby Fancy Meeting You Here
1960 Ray Conniff Say It with Music (A Touch of Latin) [1]
1963 Paul Anka Our Man Around the World [2]
1970 Antonio Carlos Jobim Stone Flower [3]
1970 Erasmo Carlos Erasmo Carlos & Os Tremendões [4]
1975 Elis Regina A Arte de Elis Regina [5]
1973 Banda Eletrica Banda Eletrica
1975 The Ritchie Family Brazil
1976 Chet Atkins Guitar Samples [6]
1976 João Gilberto Amoroso (later re-recorded in Live in Montreux ) [7]
1980 Gal Costa Aquarela do Brasil [8]
1980 Simone Ao Vivo [9]
1981 Tav Falco's Panther Burns Behind The Magnolia Curtain [10]
1985 Geoff Muldaur Brazil (original motion picture soundtrack)
1987 Ney Matogrosso Pescador de Pérolas [11]
1990 Harry Belafonte Around the World with the Entertainers [12]
1997 Pink Martini Sympathique [13]
1998 Vengaboys The Party Album
1995 Dionne Warwick Aquarela do Brazil [14]
2000 Rosemary Clooney Brazil [15]
2002 Cornelius Point
2004 Martinho da Vila Apresenta Mané do Cavaco [16]
2005 Arcade Fire Rebellion (Lies) (B-side)
2005 Daniela Mercury Balé Mulato [17]
2005 Plácido Domingo Lo the Essencial [18]
2007 Chick Corea & Béla Fleck The Enchantment [19]


Year Film Director
1942 Saludos Amigos Norman FergusonWilfred JacksonJack KinneyHamilton LuskeBill Roberts
1943 The gang's All Here Busby Berkeley
1944 The Three Caballeros Norman FergusonClyde GeronimiJack KinneyBill Roberts
1948 Sitting Pretty Walter Long
1956 The Eddy Duchin Story George Sidney
1976 Silent Movie Mel Brooks
1980 Stardust Memories Woody Allen
1985 Brazil Terry Gilliam
1998 There's Something About Mary Farrelly brothers
1999 Three to Tango Damon Santostefano
1999 Being John Malkovich (Trailer) Spike Jonze
2003 Carandiru Hector Babenco
2003 Something's Gotta Give Nancy Meyers
2004 The Aviator Martin Scorsese
2006 Sicko Michael Moore
2007 Bee Movie (Trailer) Steve Hickner
2008 WALL•E (Trailer) Andrew Stanton

Television programs[Edit]Edit

Year Television Series Episode
1996 Dexter's Lab "Dimwit Dexter"
2002 The Simpsons "Blame it on Lisa"
2007 Vidas Wins Theme song
2008 Eli Stone Theme song and during episode previews
Sex and the City If Charlotte Gets a Brazilian bikiniwax accidentally.
SCTV as Mr. Mambo, played by John Candy, appears in the "Words to Live By" segmen

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