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About this Piece

Brazilian composer, guitarist, and singer Antônio Carlos Jobim (1927–1994) made bossa nova an international commodity during the West Coast/Cool Jazz era of the ’50s and ’60s. “Desfinado” was recorded by Stan Getz and Charlie Byrd on the 1962 album Jazz Samba and spent weeks near the top of Billboard Magazine’s pop chart. The 1965 album Getz/Gilberto, also featuring “Desfinado,” was the first jazz record to win the Grammy Award for Album of the Year. Another Jobim song from the same album, “The Girl from Ipanema,” made headlines in 2004 when it was listed by the Library of Congress on the National Recording Registry. It became one of the most recorded songs of all time and cemented Jobim’s reputation as a jazz/pop icon. —Thomas Neenan