Antonio “Tom” Carlos Jobim was an exceptionally famous musician from Brazil. Most music gurus would call him the father of the renowned Bossa Nova style, which he had mastered thanks to his ability within the Latin Jazz and Samba genres. He was also known for his collaboration with various artists, both foreign and local.
Jobim was born in Tijuca, Rio de Janeiro on the 25 January 1927. He was gifted piano by his stepfather at a young age, he taught himself how to play it, a skill which got him multiple gigs at nightclubs and bars. When Jobim was fourteen years old, he started receiving formal training in music from Hans-Joachim Koellreutter, the famous composer and leader of the Musica Nova group. Jobim was greatly influenced by the works of Pixinguinha, the frontrunner of the illustrious ‘Os Oito Batutas’ group, and by other Brazilian artists such as Heitor Villa-Lobos. He started off his career by contributing to various groups, most notably Elizete Cardoso, for whom he wrote Chega de Saudade, which was regarded by many to be the first Bossa Nova song ever written. He wrote the soundtrack for the academy award winning film ‘Black Orpheus’ in 1959, after which he released his first studio album ‘The Composer of Desafinado’ in 1963. In 1963, Jobim also worked with jazz musicians from America, including Joao Gilberto and Stan Getz, with whom he released highly successful albums. One such album went on to win three Grammy Awards in 1965, including the highly coveted Grammy Award for Album of the Year. Perhaps Jobim is most known for his song “Garota de Ipanema” or “The Girl from Ipanema”. This song had tremendous outreach, for it made appearances in charts as far as the United Kingdom, and it gave Jobim, along with Stan Getz and Gilberto, worldwide fame. “The Girl from Ipanema” also gave worldwide recognition to the Bossa Nova genre. Jobim also released several live albums from his jazz performances, including the highly popular collection “Antonio Carlos Jobim and Friends”, which included performances from artists like Joe Henderson and Herbie Hancock. His last studio album was released in 1995 after his death; titled “Inedito”. Previously, Jobim had also released albums in collaboration with Edu Lobo, Frank Sinatra, and Miucha.
Antonio Carlos Jobim died on 8 December 1994 due to cardiac arrest while recovering from a surgery. He is remembered for his contribution and creation of the Bossa Nova genre, in addition to his techniques in harmony and chord structure that ultimately became common practice in jazz music. He was a great influence to accomplished musicians like Frank Sinatra, Gal Costa, Elis Regina, Sergio Mendes, and Flora Purim. His sheer impact on Brazilian music was so magnificent that Rio named its very own airport after him. His brilliance was also noted outside his country and in powerful music circles, for he was awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award posthumously in 2012.