“And when she passes, he smiles, but she doesn’t see…“
– Astrud Gilberto from the 1962 song “The Girl From Ipanema” . Composed by Antonio Carlos Jobim with Portuguese lyrics by Vinicius de Moraes and English lyrics by Norman Gimbel. It was a worldwide hit in the mid-1960s and won a Grammy for Record of the Year in 1965. Song Quotes, Song Lyrics
Astrud Gilberto, was the only one who could speak English well and… without trained singer mannerisms, proved a perfect fit for the song.
Behind the Bossa Nova Jazz Song
During a recording session in New York with João Gilberto, Antonio Carlos Jobim and Stan Getz, the idea of cutting an English-language version of the Brazilian-Portuguese-language hit “Garota de Ipanema” came up. Norman Gimbel wrote the English lyrics. João’s wife, Astrud Gilberto, was the only one of the Brazilians who could speak English well and was chosen to sing. Her voice, without trained singer mannerisms, proved a perfect fit for the song.
The song was inspired by Heloísa Eneida Menezes Paes Pinto (now Helô Pinheiro), a seventeen-year-old girl living on Montenegro Street in Ipanema. Daily, she would stroll past the Veloso bar-café, not just to the beach (“each day when she walks to the sea”), but in the everyday course of her life. She would sometimes enter the bar to buy cigarettes for her mother and leave to the sound of wolf-whistles. In the winter of 1962, the composers saw the girl pass by the bar. Since the song became popular, she has become a celebrity. continued