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Leila Pinheiro portrait Leila Pinheiro is one of a younger generation of MPB chanteuse-divas. She started her career in the early 1980s and became known as one of the foremost bossa nova classicists/revivalists... I've found her work to be a little too slick and controlled, but she is quite popular inside Brazil and elsewhere... Here's a quick look at her work...


Leila Pinheiro "Leila Pinheiro" (1983)

Leila Pinheiro "Olho Nu" (Polygram, 1986)

Leila Pinheiro "Alma" (Polygram, 1988)

Leila Pinheiro "Benacao, Bossa Nova" (Polygram, 1989)

Leila Pinheiro "Outras Caras" (Polygram, 1991)

Leila Pinheiro "Coisas Do Brasil" (Polygram, 1993)

Leila Pinheiro "Isso E Bossa Nova" (EMI, 1994)
Expert, but unenthralling, latter-day bossa nova. Pinheiro isn't as inspired a vocalist as, say, Elis Regina, but she also isn't as erratic. This is solidly produced by Joao Augusto -- with everything perfectly in its place, from the stately string sections to the muted cuica. Pinheiro's voice is also quite smooth and precise. If you're looking for some nice, glossy background music, this could fill the bill quite nicely.

Leila Pinheiro "Catavento E Girassol" (EMI, 1996)
A tribute to songwriters Aldir Blanc and Guinga, who both also perform on the album. This disc may go a long ways towards explaining her otherwise somewhat elusive appeal. The best tracks on here are bouncy, sprightly and tastefully arranged -- collaborators include Aldir Blanc, Joao Augusto and guitarists Paulo Bellinati and Guinga. The album starts off with some of the most compelling stuff I've heard her do -- and her vocals easily match the concise, playful tone of the arrangements. That being said, there is an artistic arc to this album, and it leads inexorably towards Pinheiro's dreary, trademarked pop sophistication; the delicate balance of the album's first third dissolves and gives way to a style which I find a bit irritating. Still, about half this album is really quite nice. If you want to give this gal a try, this is where I'd recommend you start.

Leila Pinheiro "Na Ponta Da Lingua" (EMI, 1998)
Drippy MPB pop balladry. If you like Gal Costa's later stuff, but wish she had a stronger voice, you might enjoy this. It's pretty snoozy, though.

Leila Pinheiro "Reencontro: Leila Pinheiro Canta Ivan Lins & Gonzaguinha" (EMI, 2000)

Leila Pinheiro "Mais Coisas Do Brasil" (Universal, 2001)

Leila Pinheiro "Mos Horizontes Do Mundo" (Biscoito Fino, 2005)

Leila Pinheiro "Mos Horizontes Do Mundo -- Ao Vivo" (Biscoito Fino, 2005)


Leila Pinheiro "A Bossa De Leila" (Universal, 1994)
A brief, 14-song best-of set, covering her 1986-1993 stint on the Polygram label...

Leila Pinheiro "Benacao: O Melhor De Leila Pinheiro" (Polygram, 1999)

Leila Pinheiro "Millennium" (Universal, 1999)

Leila Pinheiro "Serie Bis" (EMI, 2000)
This 2-CD set that samples from three EMI albums -- Isso E Bossa Nova, Catavento E Girassol and Na Ponta Da Lingua-- listed above... It's some of her later material, and ranges from bland to mildly bombastic. Somewhat engaging, but perhaps overly sophisticated. This collection is probably a more useful introduction to her work than any of the albums it draws on.

Leila Pinheiro "Serie Sem Limite" (Universal, 2001)

Leila Pinheiro "Serie Identidade" (EMI, 2001)

Leila Pinheiro "The Essential Leila Pinheiro" (EMI, 2003)

Leila Pinheiro "A Arte De Leila Pinheiro" (Polygram, 2005)


  • All Brazilian Music, as usual, has a good biographical sketch and discography... (In English and Portuguese.)

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