Brazilian Music

Brazilian music, collective name for the urban popular music known as Música Popular Brasileira (MPB), in addition to which there is a great variety of regional musical styles in Brazil.

They are the result of very different histories in the respective regions of the country. Economic and political conditions have favored certain demographic and thus cultural developments. In the traditional sugar-growing regions of the north-east, the music of the slaves who were abducted from Africa has maintained the structures of African music or mixed it with the legacy of other cultures. In southern Brazil, there is a stronger European influence due to strong immigration from Europe (since the middle of the 19th century). The poet and scholar M. de Andrade has stated that the indigenous people have a share in Brazilian culturealready strictly denied in 1928. The dynamic with which indigenous culture is absorbed by the majority culture is unchecked. While there are indigenous cultures that have retained a certain degree of independence, most indigenous peoples are in a process of accelerated integration and assimilation.

According to thefreegeography, the division into Luso-Brazilian and Afro-Brazilian music traditions, as it is sometimes carried out, thus contradicts the cultural self-image of the Brazilians, who see it as a disregard for the Brazilian contribution to their culture by reducing it to its roots. The fascination of Brazilian music does not lie in the fact that it goes back to Portuguese or African origins, but in its creative potential, in what it has made of these beginnings over a 500-year history.

Art music

Like all colonies, Brazil was for a long time dependent on the colonial power to develop its own art music. Following the Portuguese model, v. Chr. a. Sacred music composed by the church bandmasters assigned to the churches. With the exploitation of the mineral resources in the Minas Gerais in the 18th century, the music took on a considerable upswing by the local free mulatto musicians and also left the church. This development intensified when Rio de Janeiro became the capital in 1763 and secular music also gained greater importance due to the relocation of the Portuguese royal family. At the beginning of the 19th century and after gaining independence in 1822, Brazilian music of its own slowly emerged, which in Francesco Manuel da Sliva (* 1795, † 1865) found her father; the national anthem of the country was composed by him.

While the specifically Brazilian music in the music of Alexandre Levy (* 1864, † 1892) was still limited to generally known dance songs, at the turn of the 20th century, some works by Alberto Nepomuceno (* 1864, † 1920) showed on the one hand the Willing to trace and stylize the folk music of his home country in independent compositions, but on the other hand also the tendency towards eclecticism in all of Brazilian music of the century. At the latest with H. Villa-Lobos, the musical life of Brazil found connection to the developments in the western world. Outstanding works created inter alia. also Francisco Mignone (* 1897, † 1986) and M. Camargo Guarnieri (* 1907, † 1993). Sometimes composers joined together in different groups, such as Gilberto Mendes (* 1922, † 2016), Rogério Duprat (* 1932), Marlos Nobre (* 1939), Jocy de Oliveira (* 1936) and Jorge Antunes (* 1942) created internationally recognized works of contemporary Brazilian music.


The most important pillar of the transport system is road traffic, which in large parts of the country is made considerably more difficult by natural conditions (e.g. tropical climate with heavy rainfall), especially since only around 246,000 km of the 2 million km long road network are asphalted. There is a dense road network in the south and south-east, in parts of the east and in the north-east. The paved highways that start from Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo and connect the Brasília with the individual parts of the country, as well as the highways that open up the Amazon, are of greatest importance. Public passenger transport is mainly carried out with intercity buses, with national air transport also playing an increasing role (95.9 million passengers). Rail traffic is only important in the metropolitan areas. The efficiency of the railway network (29,850 km) remains unsatisfactory even after the privatizations in the 1990s, mainly due to different track gauges and the poor condition of many systems despite high investments. Under pressure from the mining companies, which are dependent on freight transport on rails, the expansion and construction of the route network has begun in recent years. Although Brazil has around 50,000 km of navigable inland waterways, the the expansion and construction of the route network began in recent years. Although Brazil has around 50,000 km of navigable inland waterways, the the expansion and construction of the route network began in recent years. Although Brazil has around 50,000 km of navigable inland waterways, the Inland waterway transport poorly developed. In contrast, shipping is of paramount importance in foreign trade. Brazil is the leading shipping nation in South America and, in addition to the three large ore ports in São Luis, Vitória and Rio de Janeiro, has z. B. with Santos via the largest container port on the subcontinent. The air transport network extends over the whole country. The largest international airports are the airports of São Paulo (Guarulhos and Congonhas), Rio de Janeiro (Galeão) and Brasília.

Brazilian Music

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