Hebrew School

Israeli Bossa Nova

Pais Tropical – Songs From Brazil (1977)

As you may know, I’m in a band of mostly Americans who pretend to be French. So perhaps I shouldn’t be so surprised to think that 30 years ago, there were Israelis in fake Brazilian bands.

This album of Brazilian hits of the day, sung in Hebrew, apparently caused quite a frenzy in Israel when it was released.  Nationally renowned composer Ehud Manor translated and re-wrote the lyrics (he also wrote the Eurovision winner “A-Ba-Ni-Bi” which I wrote about here); Matti Caspi did the arrangements. Included are songs like “A Felicidade” from Black Orpheus by Antonio Carlos Jobim and the title track by Jorge Ben (originally recorded by Sergio Mendes & Brasil ’77). Here’s the latter:

Here’s “Casa de Bamba,” also from the record:

And in case that did not quench your thirst for Hebrew Bossa (and what would, really?), here’s more of this stuff than you’ll know what to do with.


2 Comments so far
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Thanks for posting this great page! I own a copy of Pais Tropical and every song on there is great. Matti Caspi is my favorite Israeli singer. This album is a classic example of Israeli Bossa Nova!

Comment by Matthew Cloner

Great videos. Thanks.

Comment by Maria

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