Brazilian Legend Gilberto Gil to Be Honored

Gilberto Gil
Gilberto Gil
Miami, USA – Internationally renowned recording artist Gilberto Gil will be honored as the 2003 Latin Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (LARAS) Person Of The Year, it was announced by the Latin Recording Academy®. The honor recognizes Gil’s professional, cultural and social accomplishments. A portion of the proceeds from the LARAS Person Of The Year tribute dinner will benefit the Latin Recording Academy’s outreach programs.

As a truly international organization, the Latin Recording Academy looks to honor individuals who have made a global impact on music and culture,” said Gabriel Abaroa, President of the Latin Recording Academy. “No one embodies this like Gil, and it is the Latin Recording Academy’s great pleasure to honor this pioneer of limitless passion who has time and time again united cultures through his music.”

Born Gilberto Passos Gil Moreira in Salvador, Brazil in 1942, GRAMMY® Award and two-time Latin GRAMMY Award-winning artist Gilberto Gil is one of the most renowned international singer/songwriters, composers and guitar players of his time.

A leader of the Tropicália movement in Brazil in the ’60s and ’70s — along with artists including Caetano Veloso and Gal Costa — Gil fused traditional Brazilian genres such as samba and bossa nova with rock and folk music, and is recognized today as a pioneer in world music. Tropicália solidified Gil’s importance to the culture of his country when the radically innovative music movement, which had political and social undercurrents, proved too revolutionary and was perceived a threat by the country’s military dictatorship. He and Veloso were placed in solitary confinement and eventually fled to England. After three years in England, Gil returned to Brazil in 1972.

As an artist, Gil has spanned many genres, earning both the respect of his peers and a widely diverse fan base in many different musical circles, including jazz and reggae in addition to Brazilian folk and popular music. In a career that has spanned four decades, he has released 64 albums, has 12 gold records and five platinum singles, and has recorded or performed with many legendary artists including João Gilberto, Sting, Pink Floyd, Yes, the Wailers, Stevie Wonder, and Jimmy Cliff.

Over the years, Gil has become active in many environmental and social projects. In the late ’70s, he became a prominent spokesman for the black consciousness movement then taking place in Brazil. In the early ’90s, Gil continued his involvement in social and political causes in his native country, finding widespread support for his political stances, and was elected to office in his hometown of Salvador. The French Minister of Culture honored Gil with the Knighthood of the Order of the Arts and Literature for his work. In December 2002, Gil was named Brazil’s Minister of Culture by then President-elect Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.

Every year he tours Europe, North America, Latin America and Japan with his contagious international brand of pop music.

He will receive the Person Of The Year honor on Sept. 2 at a star-studded tribute dinner, concert and online auction — featuring collectibles such as music memorabilia, artwork and other luxury items — in Miami at a venue to be announced. The LARAS Person Of The Year tribute dinner is one of the most prestigious events of Latin GRAMMY Week and will precede the 4th Annual Latin GRAMMY Awards, which will be held at AmericanAirlines Arena on Sept. 3 and be broadcast domestically by the CBS Television Network from 9-11 p.m. (ET/PT). CBS also will distribute the show internationally through CBS Broadcast International, providing the show to more than 100 countries. Nominees will be announced this summer.

Gilberto Gil is the fourth Latin Recording Academy Person Of The Year honoree. Previous honorees are Vicente Fernández, Julio Iglesias and Emilio Estefan.

For information on purchasing tickets, tables or recognition in the souvenir program for the LARAS Person Of The Year tribute to Gilberto Gil, please contact Dana Tomarken at the Recording Academy, 310.392.3777.

The Latin Recording Academy is a membership-based organization comprised of approximately 4,500 recording artists, musicians, producers and other creative and technical recording professionals who are dedicated to improving the quality of life and cultural conditions for Latin music and its makers. In addition to producing the Latin GRAMMY Awards to honor excellence in recorded music, the Latin Recording Academy and its associated foundations offer educational and membership outreach programs in Latin countries.

The Latin Recording Academy has built its template of member services and advocacy around the similar programs instituted by the Recording Academy, a non-profit organization comprised of 18,000 musicians, producers and other recording professionals. Best known for the GRAMMY® Awards, the Recording Academy also is responsible for numerous groundbreaking outreach programs involving education, human services and cultural enrichment. For more information about the Latin Recording Academy, or to view this release in English, Spanish or Portuguese, please visit the Academy’s Web site at Latin Academy. For information about the GRAMMY Awards process, please visit GRAMMY Process.