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Maria Bethânia

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Santo Amaro da Purificação, Bahia, Brazil (1946 – present)

Maria Bethânia (born 18 June, 1946 in Santo Amaro da Purificação, Bahia, Brazil) is a Brazilian singer. She is the second best selling Brazilian female singer of all time, with more than 24 million albums sold.

Considered to be one of the greatest interpreters in the history of Brazilian popular music. Sister of the singer and composer Caetano Veloso, she began her artistic career in 1963, appearing in the play “Boca de Ouro” by Nelson Rodrigues. A song about the play was written by Caetano Veloso, who opened the show singing a samba track by Ataulfo Alves. That year she met Gilberto Gil, Gal Costa, Tom Zé, Djalma Correa, Pitti, Alcivando Luz and Fernando Lona in Salvador, with whom she performed at the commemorations inaugurating the Vila Velha de Salvador theatre in 1964 in the shows “Nós por exemplo” and “Nova bossa velha, velha bossa nova”. In 1964 she also appeared in “Mora na Filosofia”, her first solo show, when she met Nara Leão. As 1965 she replaced the muse of in the show at Teatro Opinião (Rio de Janeiro), sharing the stage with Zé Kéti and João Do Vale. She stood out for her stirring interpretation of the song “Carcará”. In 1965 she also recorded her first record, a single containing the tracks “Carcará” and “É de manhã”, the first recording of Caetano Veloso’s composition. That same year she released a double single with the songs “Carcará”, “No carnaval”, “Mora na filosofia” and “Só eu sei”, followed by her debut album “Maria Bethânia” and the record “Maria Bethânia canta Noel Rosa”. That year she also performed in the show Arena canta Bahia, directed by Augusto Boal, alongside Gal, Gil, Caetano, Pitti and Tom Zé.

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