Roberto Carlos initiated a major revolution of customs in Brazil in the '60s. Reaching success in a period coinciding with the youth movement started by the Beatles that was taking over the world,...Expand
Roberto Carlos initiated a major revolution of customs in Brazil in the '60s. Reaching success in a period coinciding with the youth movement started by the Beatles that was taking over the world, Carlos was the leader of Jovem Guarda. He led the TV show that became a generic denomination of a musical style and what was a definitive change of face to the Brazilian phonographic market and of the very art of marketing itself (with the advent of an aggressive merchandising of the JG's top figures, including films, clothes, etc.), encompassing deep behavioral/gestual/language influences widespread through his entire generation. His light music, derived from British pop, and his (and his partner's Erasmo Carlos') lyrics (happy, humorous, and full of fashionable youth slang and naïve though unexpectedly sexual) were deeply contrasting to the serious MPB, with its somber images and protest songs. After all, Brazil was living in a dark period of the military dictatorship, or the "years of lead" as they became known.
A few years later, in the late '60s, Carlos (counseled by his advisors) changed his style to become the most successful romantic artist in Brazil. Having written (always with Erasmo Carlos) some of the most beautiful songs in this style (such as "Detalhes," "Sua Estupidez," "Jesus Cristo," "Debaixo dos Caracóis dos Seus Cabelos," etc.), Carlos accumulated virtually all possible accomplishments as a highly successful artist, including a solid international career with awards like the Grammy and top positions on Billboard's Latin charts. Though the adherence to a worn-out sentimental formula proved to be affective in commercial terms (more than 70 million albums sold in his career), it ultimately led him to be known, in the '80s and '90s, as a cheesy artist by youngsters and part of the adult listeners. Nevertheless, the mid-'90s witnessed a resurgence of Jovem Guarda talents through tributes of new rockers and Carlos reached the 21st century uncontestedly enjoying his absolute title: the King.
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