Probably nobody did more in the 1950s and 60s to popularize samba and bossa nova music than the Brazilian singer Sylvia Telles, who was already a star on the Latin American music scene, and was on the verge of international stardom when she was tragically killed in a car accident at the age of 32, after recording her fifth album. Though many people aren't familiar with her name, she was a brilliant singer and performer who was enormously influential on other Latin American singers, such as Astrud Gilberto.
The legendary singer/musician/songwriter Antonio Carlos Jobim wrote one of his most famous songs, "Dindi" specifically for Sylvia, because that was her nickname in Portuguese. (The word is pronounced "Jin-Jee.") The song has been recorded many times over the years,however the best version is still the plaintive and heartfelt version that Sylvia herself recorded before she was killed.
Below is Sylvia singing "Dindi," the song that was written specifically for her by Antonio Carlos Jobim.
Guitarist Rosinha de Valenca went on to record with such music heavyweights as Sergio Mendes, Stan Getz, Sarah Vaughan, and Henry Mancini, making records well into the late 1970s. She eventually had to stop performing due to health problems, and in 1992 suffered a major
heart attack that left her severely brain damaged. She lived for 12 more years in a vegetative state, finally dying of respiratory failure in 2004.
Here's to Sylvia Telles and Rosinha de Valenca, two of the amazing women of music who've made our world a better place for having been a part of it.