Gal Costa, legendary Brazilian singer, has died at age 77. He was an original member of both the great Rio de Janeiro bands Carlinhos Aires and Pordios, and he performed with them both as a solo artist and with Gilberto Gil. As an interpreter of Brazilian music, he reached a peak after his album “Em Avante” in 1982, which made him into one of the first stars in Brazil. He would go on to rework the music of Gilberto Gil further with his albums “Seis” (1983), “Uma Época” (1988), “Eu Amo Esse S**t” (1991), “Hoje Não Digo Nada” (2001), “A Travessia” (2006), and now his final, “A Casa”/“A Morte” which will be out this Friday (September 5). Here’s a clip from his song “A Casa”:
I used to listen to the Beatles a lot while growing up in the late ’60s and ’70s when my parents bought me a tiny record player with mono audio. I was 15, and my parents played us a ton of Beatles stuff, mostly singles on “Paperback Writer,” a Beatles compilation released in 1965 or 1966. I had my first vinyl record a few weeks later, when I received a Beatles “Beatles” set from my step-father, and it was a complete disaster. There were so many bad tracks, and the quality of the vinyl was so poor that it was almost impossible to play. I have no idea how my step-father acquired the set, but he was so eager to get us the set that he was willing to spend the money he’d earned by repairing the machine.
The first album (and it was the first pop “solo” album) that I ever bought was for a friend’s birthday in 1976. It was The Beatles’ “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” on LP. I was totally blown away by the quality of the original pressing, and I thought the only reason I was buying the album was because I wanted to