Brazilian iconic singer Gal Costa passed away Wednesday morning in Sao Paulo at the age of 77, it was reported. The cause of death was not immediately disclosed.
Born in Salvador de Bahia as Maria da Graça Costa Penna Burgos, the artist was one of the South American country's most conspicuous performers from the early 1960s onwards alongside Gilberto Gil, Caetano Veloso, and Maria Bethânia, with whom she partnered in the group Doces Bárbaros.
The 80-year-old Gilberto Gil, who served as culture minister in 2003 under then-President Luiz Inácio Lula Da Silva, said he had lost a sister. And Lula, who is getting ready to return to the Alvorada Palace next year, admitted that the country had lost one of its great voices.
Costa had recently undergone nose surgery to have a nodule removed, which caused her to suspend her European tour scheduled for later in 2022.
She was one of the greatest singers in the world, one of our main artists to bring the name and sounds of Brazil to the entire planet, Lula went on through his Twitter account.
Her talent, technique, and audacity enriched and renewed our culture, formed and marked the lives of millions of Brazilians, the Workers' Party leader went on. Lula also wept when he said that Gal Costa's legacy, work, memory, and songs will be as eternal as her name.
Costa's repertoire included samba, bossa nova, and romantic songs. She shared stages and recordings with almost every outstanding performer in Brazil. Among her hits were Modinha para Gabriela, Folhetim by Chico Buarque, and Paula e Bebeto by Milton Nascimento and Caetano Veloso. She also sang Baby, Vapor Barato and Meu Nome é Gal. Later, she found her way through to younger generations with Um dia de Domingo” featuring Tim Maia.
During her 50-year career which she started under her given name of Maria da Graça before switching to Gal Costa on her agent's advice, Costa also partnered with Argentine singer Mercedes Sosa and Spain's Joan Manuel Serrat, among other singers.
While most of her colleagues fled Brazil during the 1964-1985 military dictatorship, she stayed in Brazil.