“I’ll never forget. I know the date: it was December 12, 1993,” recalled Joyce Moreno, in a 2009 interview. The singer-songwriter, a living legend in her native Brazil, was already a musical veteran and a substantial success at home. Swept up in the bossa nova revolution of the early 1960s, she began teaching herself guitar at 14 and released her first album at 20. Throughout the ensuing decades, she would record several more albums, tour extensively, and be declared “one of the greatest singers of all time” by bossa pioneer Antonio Carlos Jobim (who co-wrote the genre’s most famous song, “The Girl from Ipanema”).
Yet despite her stature, Moreno (whose professional name until the late aughts was simply “Joyce”) had never played in England, and couldn’t fathom why she ever would. Her music hadn’t been released in that country and seemingly wasn’t known within its borders, as was…
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