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HomeLJS PodcastLearn Jazz StandardsFrom the Vault: Bossa Nova Basics with Livio Almeida (5 Year Birthday...

From the Vault: Bossa Nova Basics with Livio Almeida (5 Year Birthday Episode)

Welcome to episode 262 where today we are reaching into the LJS Podcast Vault and going back in time to revisit an episode all about Bossa Nova. Special guest Livio Almeida walks us through the basics, shedding light on important rhythms, composers, and tunes. This is one of those episodes that needs another listen!

Listen to episode 262

Today on the podcast we are going to be traveling back in time. 

We are going to be reaching into the vault of the LJS podcast to reflect on an episode back in the earlier days of the show that I think is really important and one that I don’t really talk about, or at least a subject matter I don’t really touch on a lot nowadays because I’m not really an expert in the field. 

However, it’s really important to jazz, and that is Bossa Nova and understanding the basic rhythms, understanding some ideas about how to play Bossa Nova well because Bossa Novas are a big part of the jazz standard repertoire so we need to know that very well.

I had a special guest, Livio Almeida, onboard this episode that we are going to revisit today and he is an expert at all the stuff and an incredible jazz musician as well. 

In this episode:

1. Learn about the origins of Bossa Nova

2. Learn basic rhythmic structures of Bossa Nova

3. Learn important composers to be aware of

4. Learn important tunes you need to learn

5. Learn about “Choro” music (Brazilian bebop)

6. Brent recaps his biggest episode takeaways

Important Links

1. LJS Inner Circle Membership

Brent Vaartstra
Brent Vaartstra is a professional jazz guitarist and educator living in New York City. He is the head blogger and podcast host for which he owns and operates. He actively performs around the New York metropolitan area and is the author of the Hal Leonard publication "Visual Improvisation for Jazz Guitar." He's also the host of the music entrepreneurship podcast "Passive Income Musician."


  1. Extremely informative! As a guitarist , bassist and pianist at 68 years of age, I’m still learning new ideas for my playing. This podcast is a true learning tool. My favorite artists are Stan Getz, Charlie Byrd, Jobim, and Eliane Elias – a beautiful vocalist who captures the bossa sound. The rhythm section has to be “tight” in this style of music, similar to funk and R&B. I might add that music of Argentina is very good, as well, and not too popular in the U.S. I learned bossa by listening to Charlie Byrd and Jobim.
    Young students have more opportunities today, more than we had in the 1960’s, to learn music. i.e. the internet and should use this media to expand their “chops”.

  2. Happy 5th birthday Brent! A wonderful achievement and a fantastic treasure trove for us listeners. Here’s to the next five years.


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