Mercedes Sosa

Mercedes Sosa Biography

Honored all over the world as "The Voice of Latin America" and revered in her native Argentina as "a symbol of life and freedom", Mercedes Sosa, almost 35 years after her début, remains a dynamic, inspiring figure, and one of the most versatile artists on the international music scene.

The driving force behind the nueva canción movement, singer Mercedes Sosa was born and raised in Tucamán, Argentina, beginning her performing career at age 15 after taking top honors in a radio station amateur competition. A rich, expressive vocalist and a gifted interpreter, Sosa was dubbed "the voice of the silent majority" for her choice of overtly political material, and alongside artists including Violetta Parra and Atahualpa Yupanqui she spearheaded the rise of the so-called "nueva canción" movement, which heralded the emergence of protest music across Argentina and Chile during the 1960s. The movement was crippled in 1973 by the CIA-sponsored coup which ousted democratically-elected Chilean President Salvador Allende; with her repertoire of songs championing human rights and democracy, Sosa was viewed as a serious threat by the military regime which assumed power, and in 1975 she was arrested during a live performance which also resulted in the incarceration of many audience members. Death threats forced her to leave Argentina in 1979, and she remained in exile for three years, finally returning with a triumphant comeback performance in February 1982. Sosa recorded prolifically in the years to follow. In fall 2000, Sosa won a Grammy for Best Folk Album for Misa Criolla at the first annual Latin Grammy Awards.

Mercedes Sosa Bio from Discogs

Mercedes Sosa, known as La Negra, (born July 9, 1935 in San Miguel de Tucuman, Argentina – October 4, 2009, Buenos Aires) was an Argentine singer who was and remains immensely popular throughout Latin America and internationally. With her roots in Argentine folk music, in 1950, at age fifteen, she won a singing competition organized by a local radio station, and in the 1960s Sosa became one of the preeminent exponents of 'nueva canción' and started touring internationally. She also gave voice to many songs written by Brazilians and Cubans. She was best known as the 'voice of the voiceless ones'. At a concert in La Plata in 1979 she was arrested on stage by the military junta, along with the attending crowd. Banned in her own country, she moved to Paris and then to Madrid until her return to Argentina in 1982. Sosa also was a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for Latin America and the Caribbean.

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