África Brasil

África Brasil is a 1976 release by Brazilian artist Jorge Ben, recording at the time as Jorge Ben. It was Ben's 14th studio album. África Brasil represented a milestone in Ben's career with Ben's switch to electric guitar and incorporation of both Afro-Brazilian and African-American funk music styles into his sound. Known for its funkiness, África Brasil is one of Ben's best-known recordings.[3] Rolling Stone Brazil listed it as one of the 100 best Brazilian albums in history,[4] and it was included in both Robert Dimery's 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die as well as Tom Moon's collection 1,000 Recordings to Hear Before You Die.

África Brasil
JBenÁfricaBrasil .jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedSeptember 23, 1976
ProducerMarco Mazzola
Jorge Ben chronology
Gil e Jorge
África Brasil
Professional ratings
Review scores
Tom Hull – on the WebA–[2]


For África Brasil Ben reworked three of his earlier compositions: "A Princesa e o Plebeu" from Sacundin Ben Samba, "Taj Mahal" from Ben, and "Zumbi" from A Tábua de Esmeralda. The album's opening track "Ponta de Lança Africano (Umbabarauma)", a song about an African football striker, became a well known soccer-associated track.[5][6] It was later included on David Byrne's 1989 compilation Brazil Classics Beleza Tropical, prompting rotation of a video for the track on VH-1.[7][8] In 1991 Ambitious Lovers released a cover version on 12-inch single that became a dance hit.[8] A version by Soulfly was released in 1998 as a single. The original version of the track was used in the documentary film Di/Glauber.[9]

In 1978 British rock singer Rod Stewart lifted a melody from "Taj Mahal" for his hit song "Da Ya Think I'm Sexy?". Ben filed a plagiarism lawsuit against Stewart, the upshot of which was Stewart's agreement to donate his royalties from the song to the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF). Stewart also performed the song at the Music for UNICEF Concert at the United Nations General Assembly in January 1979.[10]

Track listingEdit

All tracks written by Jorge Ben

Side one
1."Ponta de Lança Africano (Umbabarauma)"3:52
2."Hermes Trismegisto Escreveu"3:02
3."O Filósofo"3:27
4."Meus Filhos, Meu Tesouro"3:53
5."O Plebeu"3:07
6."Taj Mahal"3:09
Side two
1."Xica da Silva"4:05
2."A História de Jorge"3:49
3."Camisa 10 da Gávea"4:04
4."Cavaleiro do Cavalo Imaculado"4:46
5."África Brasil (Zumbi)"3:47
Total length:41:01


  • Jorge Ben: Vocals and guitar
  • João Roberto Vandaluz: Piano
  • Dadi Carvalho: Bass guitar
  • Gustavo Schroeter: Drum kit
  • Joãozinho Pereira: Percussion
  • Pedrinho das Neves: Drums and timbales
  • Wilson das Neves: Drums and timbales
  • José Roberto Bertrami: Ketboards
  • Luna: Bass drum
  • Neném: Cuica
  • Djalma Corrêa: Percussion
  • Hermes: Percussion
  • Ariovaldo: Percussion
  • Oberdan Magalhães: Percussion
  • Márcio Montarroyos: Percussion

Song arrangements were by Jorge Ben, with orchestral arrangements by José Roberto Bertrami.

Mazzola arranged the vocals and was the studio production director, assisted by Ary Carvalhaes, Luigi Hoffer, Paulo Sérgio "Chocô", João Moreira, and Rafael Azulay at Phonogram.

Aldo Luiz designed the album's cover and Jorge Vianna finalized the album's art with photography by Orlando Abrunhosa.

The album was released by Phillips in 1976, with productions and distribution by Phonogram.


  1. ^ a b Allmusic review
  2. ^ Hull, Tom (May 3, 2021). "Music Week". Tom Hull – on the Web. Retrieved May 7, 2021.
  3. ^ https://www.allmusic.com/album/frica-brasil-r661122
  4. ^ "Os 100 maiores discos da música brasileira" (in Portuguese). Umas Linhas. 2007-12-20. Archived from the original on 2009-10-08. Retrieved 2009-04-20.
  5. ^ Sullivan, Steve (2013) Encyclopedia of Great Popular Song Recordings, Scarecrow Press, ISBN 978-0810882959, p. 866
  6. ^ Kuhn, Gabriel (2011) Soccer vs. the State Tackling Football and Radical Politics, PM Press, ISBN 978-1604860535, 245
  7. ^ McGowan, Chris & Pessanha, Ricardo (1991) The Brazilian Sound: Samba, Bossa Nova, and the Popular Music of Brazil, Billboard Books, ISBN 978-0823076734, p. 97
  8. ^ a b Lannert, John (1994) "Jorge Ben Jor, WEA Turn Efforts to U.S.", Billboard, 21 May 1994, p. 1, 75
  9. ^ Pinazza, Natália & Bayman, Louis (2013) Directory of World Cinema: Brazil, Intellect, ISBN 978-1783200092, p. 195
  10. ^ (AP) "Frost Sets UNICEF Show" The Robesonian 30 November 1978: 1