Supriya Ghosh (Editor)

Soul Bossa Nova

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Released  1962
Length  2:50
Producer(s)  Quincy Jones
Recorded  1961
Writer(s)  Quincy Jones
Genre  Swing, jazz, samba, bossa nova

"Soul Bossa Nova" is a popular instrumental title, composed by and first performed by American impresario, jazz composer, arranger, and record producer Quincy Jones. It appeared on his 1962 Big Band Bossa Nova album on Mercury Records.

According to Jones, he took twenty minutes to compose the piece. The piece prominently features a cuíca, responsible for the distinctive "laughing" sound in the first bars. Multi-reed player Roland Kirk played the flute solo. Incomplete personnel on the album liner notes do not specify the prominent brass players.

Media use

  • The piece appears in the soundtracks to Sidney Lumet's 1964 dramatic film The Pawnbroker, which was scored by Jones.
  • Woody Allen's 1969 comedy Take the Money and Run features a similar-sounding instrumental composed by Marvin Hamlisch.
  • In 1969, the French composer Nino Ferrer used the orchestration of the theme for the chorus of his song Les cornichons, based on the title "Big Nick" by James Booker.
  • It was used by BBC Radio 1 disc jockey Alan 'Fluff' Freeman as a theme for his afternoon programme that was broadcast in the UK during the 1970s.
  • The theme was used in a long-running Canadian television game show, Definition.
  • Canadian hip hop group Dream Warriors sampled the title heavily for their popular track "My Definition of a Boombastic Jazz Style", in their debut album And Now the Legacy Begins in 1991.
  • Like Dream Warriors, Canadian Mike Myers grew up watching Definition, and as a homage to his childhood used the title as the theme for the Austin Powers film series, starting with Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery in 1997.
  • It was used as a theme for the 1998 FIFA World Cup.
  • It appeared in the videogames Samba de Amigo (1999), Rayman Raving Rabbids: TV Party (2008), and Just Dance 2 (2010).
  • The title was used from 2001 to 2005 as the title theme in a German "ethno-comedy" TV show Was guckst du? ("What 'ya watching?"), which was based on the British TV show Goodness Gracious Me.
  • It was sampled by Ludacris for his Austin Powers-themed 2005 single, "Number One Spot", on his 2004 album The Red Light District.
  • The title was featured in the 2009 pilot episode of Glee.
  • In 2010, Canadian jazz singer Emilie-Claire Barlow merged this piece with Sonny Bono's "The Beat Goes On" for the title track of her album of pop covers, The Beat Goes On.
  • In 2014, Jones executive produced Canadian jazz singer Nikki Yanofsky's album Little Secret, which featured a song entitled "Something New". The song interpolated melodic references to "Soul Bossa Nova".
  • References

    Soul Bossa Nova Wikipedia


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