1. Tico-Tico (Tico-Tico no Fubá. Translation: Crown sparrow in the cornmeal)
Abreu was far from being a talented instrumentalist like his countryman Azevedo, but he nonetheless was gifted in the art of composition. Many of his melodies became true jewels of success. "Tico-Tico," the most famous of them, first appeared at a dance in his hometown. When the dancers heard the opening notes of his melody, they gyrated so much that the instrumental choro earned the name of "Tico-Tico no Farelo." Much later it was renamed "Tico-Tico no Fubá" and was given lyrics by Eurico Unidos. It was introduced in the United States by Carmen Miranda in the 1947 film Copacabana.
2. The Girl From Ipanema (Garota de Ipanema)
Reaching the top of the U.S. charts in 1964, this Jobim-Moraes collaboration epitomizes the cool, seductive sound of the bossa nova.
3. Delicate (Delicado)
Released in December 1950, "Delicate" was another thundering success following "The Little Brazilian." Originally a bolero, the composition had its rhythm modified to a baião. It led the hit parade of 1951 and was one of the best-selling discs in Brazil in the era of the 78 RPM. Recorded by Percy Faith and his orchestra, it charted on the Top Ten in the United States.
4. Black Orpheus (Manha de Carnaval)
Marcel Camus' 1959 film Black Orpheus won the Cannes Film Festival Grand Prize as well as an Academy Award for Best Foreign Film. The title track, "Black Orpheus," is one of the most recorded bossa novas next to "The Girl From Ipanema."
5. Cool (Brejeiro)
This is one of Nazareth's best known and most widely performed compositions. The French classical composer Darius Milhaud incorporated this melody into his composition "Scaramouche."
6. Youngest Child/Kid Brother (Baiao Cacula)
7. Affectionate (Carinhoso)
In a nationwide vote organized by Brazilian TV Rede Globo in 2000, "Carinhoso" was the choro-song selected as the second-most beautiful Brazilian composition. Composed in 1924, the piece was tucked safely away in a corner of Pixinguinha's bookcase for several years because he knew its two-part melody was regarded very modern for the time. When "Carinhoso" was finally recorded in 1928, he was not surprised that it received negative reviews accusing him of "jazzification." It was not until Branguinho wrote lyrics for the melody and Orlando Silva, the most famous singer of the time, recorded it in 1937 that the song achieved popular success.
8. Flower of the Pastures (Flor do Cerrado)
What's distinctive about this flower is that it is in great demand by tourists as a souvenir from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil's capital city. Azevedo wrote it on September 20, 1977, during his flight from São Paul en route to the session at which it was played for the first time and recorded for the pleasure of his many fans and followers.
9. The Mouse (Camundongo)
This is one of Azevedo's most technically demanding but melodic showpieces for the cavaquinho.
10. Contrast (Contraste)
This slow choro in two distinct sections was first recorded in 1977 on the same LP with "Flower of the Pastures." Often mistaken for an Italian folk song, the melody is spellbinding.
11. The Little Brazilian (Brasileirinho)
The resounding melody of "The Little Brazilian," whose first part is played practically on one string, was made even more memorable because of Azevedo's cavaquinho virtuosity on the original recording.
12. Brazil (Aquarela do Brasil)
This composition received international exposure in the 1940s when it was included in the 1942 Walt Disney film Saudos Amigos. In a nationwide poll of Brazilians in 2000 conducted by Rede Globo TV Brasil, it was chosen as the most beautiful Brazilian song.