|Gal Costa Quick Info|
|Height||5 ft 3 in|
|Date of Birth||September 26, 1945|
|Eye Color||Dark Brown|
Gal Costa is a Brazilian singer, songwriter, instrumentalist, TV personality, and actress, best known as being one of the most prominent and most prolific female singers in Brazil. She released more than 30 studio albums between 1965 and 2018, and more than 8 live albums between 1971 and 2013. Gal made her professional debut on August 22, 1964, at a concert in her hometown of Salvador, Bahia, Brazil titled Nós, por exemplo (We, For Example) alongside a few other upcoming and already established singers. The very next year, Gal released her debut EP album, Maria da Graça, and 2 years later, her debut duo album was released titled Domingo with Caetano Veloso, another upcoming singer and songwriter from Brazil at that time. In 1969, she released her debut solo studio album, titled Gal Costa, and the same year, her 2nd solo studio album, Gal was also released. These 2 albums attracted a curious audience due to the unique mix of Tropicália/bossa nova musical genre interwoven with a few others. The attention she enjoyed also led to the release of her studio albums Legal (1970), Índia (1973), Cantar (1974), Gal Canta Caymmi (1975), Caras e Bocas (1977), Água Viva (1978), Gal Tropical (1979), and Aquarela do Brasil (1980).
In 1982, her single Festa Do Interior from her studio album Fantasia (1981) became her biggest hit ever and reached a multi-Platinum status by the end of the year. In 1982, she also released another studio album, Minha Voz, followed by Baby Gal and Trilha Sonora do Filme ‘Gabriela’ in 1983, Profana in 1984, Bem Bom in 1985, and Lua de Mel Como o Diabo Gosta in 1987. Gal also released studio albums such as Plural (1990), Gal (1992), O Sorriso do Gato de Alice (1994), Mina D’Água do Meu Canto (1995), and Aquele Frevo Axé (1998). Between 2001 and 2018, she released 7 studio albums, titled Gal de Tantos Amores (2001), Gal Bossa Tropical (2002), Todas as Coisas e Eu (2004), Hoje (2005), Recanto (2011), Estratosférica (2015), and A Pele do Futuro (2018). She also became a notable actress after she played the lead role of Carmen Miranda in the movie O Mandarim (1995). Gal also appeared in an episode of the biography, documentary series O Nome Dela é Gal in 2017, as part of HBO Latin America‘s effort of depicting her life. Gal has also amassed a large fanbase online with more than 1.5 million followers on Twitter and more than 500k followers on Instagram.
Maria da Graça Costa Penna Burgos
Salvador, Bahia, Brazil
São Paulo, Brasil
Singer, Songwriter, Instrumentalist, Actress, TV Personality
- Father – Arnaldo Burgos (Deceased, 1960)
- Mother – Mariah Costa Penna (Deceased, 1993)
Gal Costa is represented by –
- Terra (Manager) in Brazil
- Perfexx (Publicist) in São Paulo, Brazil
Tropicália, MPB (Música Popular Brasileira), Pop, Psychedelic Rock, Bossa Nova, Electronic
Vocals, Acoustic Guitar
- RCA Records
- Philips Records
- Universal Music Group
5 ft 3 in or 160 cm
70 kg or 154.5 lbs
Girlfriend / Spouse
Gal Costa has dated –
- Marina Lima (1972) – She was rumored to have hooked up with fellow singer Marina Lima as the two were spotted being very close in 1972.
- Lúcia Veríssimo (1989-2006) – Her most prominent relationship was with actress Lúcia Veríssimo who was 13 years her junior. They were in a long-term relationship for 17 years until 2006.
- Gal has a son named Gabriel, who she stated in 2019, at the age of 13, was a huge fan of the American band Earth, Wind & Fire.
Race / Ethnicity
She is of Brazilian descent.
- Large stature
- Naturally curly hair
Best Known For
- Her debut duo studio album with Caetano Veloso, Domingo (1967), and her solo studio albums Gal Costa (1969), Gal (1969), Legal (1970), Índia (1973), Cantar (1974), Caras e Bocas (1977), Água Viva (1978), Fantasia (1981), Plural (1990), Gal de Tantos Amores (2001), and Recanto (2011)
- Having a single Festa Do Interior from her studio album Fantasia (1981) go multi-Platinum by the end of 1982
- Her social media fanbase with more than 1.5 million followers on Twitter, more than 500k followers on Instagram, and more than 200k followers on Facebook
Gal Costa released her debut solo studio album titled Gal Costa in 1969, which was ranked at number 80 on the list of “Best Brazilian Albums of All Time” created by the Brazilian Rolling Stone magazine. It had 2 sides with 6 tracks each, which were titled Não Identificado, Sebastiana, Lost in the Paradise, Saudosismo, Namorinho de Portão, and Se Você Pensa, and on the 2nd side: Vou Recomeçar, Que Pena (Ele Já Não Gosta Mais de Mim), Baby, A Coisa Mais Linda Que Existe, Deus é o Amor, and Divino, Maravilhoso. The album was also considered unprecedented for featuring a mixture of countercultural Tropicália genre movement, and a “set of airy, somewhat standard bossa nova tunes.”
Gal Costa and a fellow songwriter and singer Caetano Veloso released their debut duo studio album, titled Domingo which translates to Sunday, in 1967. It featured 7 original compositions written by Caetano while the rest were composed and written by other artists, and also featured 2 sides with 6 tracks each. Tracks on the side 1 were titled Nenhuma Dor, Domingo, Um Dia, Avarandado, Coração Vagabundo, and Onde Eu Nasci Passa um Rio, while the side 2 consisted of tracks such as Zabelê, Maria Joana, Quem Me Dera, Remelexo, Candeias, and Minha Senhora.
Gal Costa made her first feature film appearance as Carmen Miranda in the musical film The Mandarin (O Mandarim) in 1995.
First TV Show
She made her first TV show appearance as ‘Herself’ in an episode of the talk-show Curto-Circuito in 1970.
Gal Costa Facts
- Her mom hoped for a musical child and listened to classical music for hours during her pregnancy.
- Gal became interested in the bossa nova genre of music after listening to the song Chega de Saudade by João Gilberto on the radio.
- She never met her dad, who passed away when she was 15 years old.
- Gal said that she was always a mature child, and an easy teenager to deal with.
- She worked as a clerk in the main record store in her hometown of Salvador, Bahia, Brazil so she could get closer to music.
- People often compared her to a fellow singer named Maria Bethânia, sister of Caetano Veloso. After moving to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1965, Gal was also featured on 1 track titled Sol Negro (Black Sun) from Maria’s debut album.
- Her song Baby from her debut album Gal Costa (1969) became one of the most covered songs in Brazilian music due to the lyrics pertaining to themes of national identity in an increasingly globalized culture.
- Her album from 1973 titled Índia pushed a lot of norms in the heterosexual, militarized country of Brazil. The cover for the album depicted a girl in the red bikini bottom and was censored. In addition, the self-titled single contained lyrics – “India of brown skin, with her little mouth [that] I want to kiss” which prompted people to try and force her to change the gender as it insinuated homosexuality, which she refused to do.
- In the 1970s, she abandoned the Tropicália sound that made her stand out. Instead, she shifted her efforts to pop and MPB (Música Popular Brasileira) e.g. Popular Brazilian Music.
- The 1st album that featured an influence of the electronic music was Recanto (2011), entirely written and produced by Caetano Veloso. Gal later stated that she was reluctant to play around with that sound for decades of her career.
- She recorded her songs in either Spanish, Portuguese, or English.
- Her 2018 album, A Pele do Futuro (The Skin of the Future) was hugely philosophical, inspired by God’s energy that organizes beings and is undying and timeless. She turned 73 years old the same week she released the album.
- Visit her official website @ galcosta.com.br.
- Follow her on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube VEVO, Spotify, Apple Music, AllMusic, and Discogs.
Featured Image by Teca Lamboglia / Flickr / CC BY-2.0