Radamés Gnattali is national and worldwide recognized as one of the greatest masters of Brazilian and Latin-American music. His concert work has consistent volume, about 300 pieces, among piano and guitar solos, as well as chamber and symphonic music. As far as the popular music is concerned, he also shines with a singular position if compared to his contemporary colleagues. Not only for the volume of his production, but also for his intensive and collaborative presence and action towards the popular musicians, always working out with piano players, samba composers, singers and chorões in the daily toil at the radio stations and recording sets. Radamés has always realized and confessed how much he has learned from them.

He may very well be considered as the founder of orchestral arrangements for popular music in Brazil, together with Pixinguinha, Radamés was a pioneer making sophisticated orchestration for the simple urban songs while preserving their identity. The percussionist and drum player Luciano Perrone, who has systemized the samba beats in the twenties, made an interesting comment about his dear friend’s aesthetic dichotomy:

“Radamés’ music is impenetrable. When he makes popular music, that is actually popular music, but when he makes concert music that is actually concert music. One   does not interfere with the other. As an arranger and conductor he knows how to make a symphonic orchestra play a samba without taking its spirit off – and nothing there smells as a symphony”.

Actually, Radamés knew how to share time and inspiration among the classic and popular genre, mixing them without any harm, putting up a balanced and rare communication between irreconcilable universes until his arrival.


The Project Radamés Gnattali popular music digital catalog, has been selected by the Program Rumos Itaú Cultural – 2017/18 and adds a new homage to the maestro’s memory, further to the concert music digital catalog, created and organized by us and presented in multimidia CD-ROM shape in 2005.

In 2006, for the hundred year anniversary, we had the honor to present to the public the first site about Radamés Gnattali, that has stayed on up to 2017, when we decided it was time to restructure it.


Created and produced by Roberto Gnattali and Adriana Ballesté, the Project aims the following points:

1) To create the first digital catalog of popular music by Radamés Gnattali, divided into two distinguished categories: a) compositions ; b) arrangements.

2) To promote the inventory, digitalization and cataloguing an image bank of all his popular music scores – compositions and/or arrangements – lifted from his personal files and other sources.

3) To construct and to provide in the web the new Radamés Gnattali Oficial Site, bilingual (portuguese – english), containing some of his unprecedented work that composes the popular music digital catalog.

4) To contribute to the preservation and promotion of Radamés’ work, national and internationally, magnifying the dialogue between the administration of his collection and the public user.


Popular music compositions

Radamés composed around 200 pieces of popular music. It is important to consider that if, on one side, his concert music was scored, with the accuracy of musical language, catalogued and kept in notebooks and files, the popular music did not benefit of the same rigor. It is not because we think that he would not spell a composition a popular, such as a samba or a choro – on the contrary, we know that Radamés was able to write anything. He felt that all was music, either popular or classic; nevertheless, the master did not dedicated to the popular music the same attention he showed to his concert composition. The result is that many of his popular compositions have disappeared. All we know about certain songs are the LPs and recording tapes. Sometimes we were lucky to find out comments and notes in the press. In order to present all of Radamés’ work we were able to find out from secure sources, some scores listed in Radamés’ general titles may not be physically available, therefore not presented in the catalog.


The Radamés’ arrangements integrating these catalogs were selected based on the following criteria:

1) Arrangements for his own compositions

2) Special arrangements (*) for other composers, written for piano or solo guitar, chamber groups of popular music, and varied orchestras that he has conducted himself, such as the Radamés Gnattali Sextect, the Camerata Carioca, among many others.

3) Special arrangements for other composers, written for any sort of musical formation.

Routine arrangements (**) have not been included in this project.

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(*) For “Special arrangements”, the organizers considered those Radamés has well structured, using  musical elaboration resources, usually applied to his concert music.

(**) Routine arrangements refer to what Radamés called “work for the day”, basically produced during the “National Radio” period, among the 1930 and 1950 decades, which would belong to a specific research and are not included hereby.



. Scores’ inventory:  Nelly Gnattali | Roberto Gnattali | Flávio de Paula
. Scores’ catalogation:  Álea de Almeida | Adriana Ballesté | Tomaz Retz
. Technological support: Monocromo
. Research and texts: Maria Clara Wasserman | Roberto Gnattali 
. Press research: Jamerson Farias | Roberto Gnattali
. Translation into english: Lidia Becker
. Proofreading: Liana Koiller Schnoor
. Score’s digitalization: DOCPRO
. Publishing /scores’ revision:  Jayme Vignoli | José Staneck | Luiz Flávio Alcofra | Marcílio Lopes
. Accounting: M & A Contadoria Contábil
. Visual design:  Daniel Gnattali
. Art Direction/Webdesign: Luciana Araújo | LUMIX design
. Desenvolvimento e CMS: Mileni Santos
. Technology and information architecture   coordination: Adriana Ballesté
. General coordination: Roberto Gnattali

Thanks to

. Aída Gnattali (in memoriam)
. Alexandre Dias (IPB-DF)
. Alexandre Loureiro (MIS-RJ)
. André Cardoso (ABM-RJ)
. Carla Gnattali (RJ)
. Dioscoteca MB [Miguel Bragioni]  (SP)
. Hugo Pilger (RJ)
. Jairo Severiano (RJ)
. Jussara Gomes Gruber (DF)
. Luciana Rabello (Casa do Choro-RJ)
, Luiz Antonio Santos (RJ)
. Luis Rabello (NL)
. Nelly Gnattali (RJ)
. Paulo Aragão (Casa do Choro-RJ)
. Priscila Câmara (RJ)
. Saulo Augusto Sanabio (RJ)
. Sergio Prata (RJ)
. Valéria Peixoto (ABM-RJ)

Consulting Sources


. Academia Brasileira de Música:
. Casa do Choro:
. Instituto Moreira Sales (IMS):
. Instituto Piano Brasileiro (IPB):
. Museu Villa-Lobos:

Discography and sound files

. Museu da Imagem e do Som do Rio de Janeiro (MIS):
. Nirez  Collection – gravações de discos de 78 rpm
. Instituto Memória Musical Brasileira (IMMuB):
. Discos do Brasil: 


. Barbosa, Valdinha & Devos, Anne Marie. Radamés Gnattali – o eterno experimentador. Rio de Janeiro: Funarte, 1984.

. Didier, Aluísio. Radamés Gnattali. Rio de Janeiro: Brasiliana Produções, 1996.

. Mariz, Vasco. História da Música no Brasil. Coleção Retratos do Brasil, volume 150. Rio de Janeiro: Civilização Brasileira / INL / MEC, 1981

. Pinheiro, Claudia. Org. A Rádio Nacional. Rio de Janeiro: Editora Nova Fronteira, 2005.

. Saroldi, Luiz Carlos & Moreira, Sonia Virgínia. Rádio Nacional: o Brasil em sintonia. Rio de Janeiro: Jorge Zahar Ed., 2005.

. Severiano, Jairo. Uma história da música popular brasileira: das origens à modernidade. São Paulo: Ed. 34, 2008.

. Severiano, Jairo & Homem de Mello, Zuza. A Canção no Tempo: 85 anos de músicas brasileiras. Vols 1e 2. São Paulo: Ed. 34, 1997.

Digital Medias

. Ballesté, Adriana & Gnattali, Roberto. Catálogo digital Radamés Gnattali, CD-ROM multimídia. Petrobras Cultural. Rio de Janeiro, 2005.

. Biblioteca Nacional:
. Cinemateca Brasileira:
. Dicionário Cravo Albin da Música Popular Brasileira:
. Enciclopédia Itaú Cultural de Arte e Cultura Brasileiras. São Paulo: Itaú Cultural, 2020:
. Fundação Getúlio Vargas –CPDOC:
. Hemeroteca da Biblioteca Nacional:
. IMS – Acervos de Música:
. IMS – Ernesto Nazareth – 150 anos:
. IMS – Pixinguinha:
. Instituto Antônio Carlos Jobim –