As one would expect Bebel Gilberto honed her musical talent from an early age. Her mother taught her to sing and harmonize as a child and provided her with a recording debut on her solo album “Miúcha & Antônio Carlos Jobim.” Two years later she performed at Carnegie Hall with her mother and Stan Getz.
She released her solo EP in 1986 entitled “Bebel Gilberto.” This would mark her first recorded collaboration with close friend and musician Cazuza . It featured “Preciso Dizer Que Te Amo”, a successful song that won her the premio sharp award for single of the year.
In 1991 she moved to her place of birth, New York. It was here that her approach to music became refined through working with a diverse range of musician including Maxwell and George Michael. It was in New York where she made a name for herself as a live performer at the Lincoln Center and contributed heavily to the bossa Nova inspired soundtrack of the 1998 film “Next Stop Wonderland”. It was also in New York in 1998 where she joined her father on stage at the Carnegie Hall, performing in front of a sold out crowd of music fans.
Towards the end of the century that marked the birth of bossa nova, Bebel was in the studio recording her first solo album. In 2000 she released her album “Tanto Tampo” which roughly translates to “So Long.” The title is significant as it jokingly expresses the long period of time that elapsed before she finally released her own solo album. If her father can be considered an innovator then she deserves a similar title as she experimented with the smooth style of bossa nova and fused it with elements of electronic music with electrifying results.
Her album was both a critical and commercial success. It earned her rave reviews from musical critics and experts and, is to this day, the best-selling bossa nova album in the post 1960 era. To date it has sold 2.5 million copies; an outstanding feat for any bossa nova artist. The album featured songs from the golden era of bossa nova music, previous work from her older material and new original songs. Songs from this album have featured on seven films including Eat, Pray and Love and Rio. It was also been used in 7 television series including Sex and the city.
Though often overshadowed by the unprecedented success of her first album her other 3 releases have all been commercial and critical successes in their own rights. It is this consistent success and innovative approach to music that ties her even closer to her father than merely blood relation.