Wilson Simonal

About Wilson Simonal

Singer Wilson Simonal was a seminal force in the development of Brazilian popular music. The architect of the pilantragem sound that dominated Brazilian charts during the late 1960s, he was the nation's first Black pop superstar. Simonal spent the late '50s as the personal assistant of newspaper columnist and talent scout Carlos Imperial; with Imperial's assistance, he began singing rock & roll at nightclubs in the Rio area, including the famed Beco des Garrafas. 1963's Tem Algo Mais was a major success, boasting a distinctive marriage of bossa nova, jazz, and orchestral pop typified by the chart smash "Balanço Zona Sul." Simonal exhibited an unerring knack for discovering new songwriting talent, recording early songs by the likes of Gilberto Gil, Chico Buarque, and Geraldo Vandré.

Rio De Janeiro, Brazil
February 23, 1938
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