In this chapter we provide an introduction to Brazil, highlighting important aspects of its history, geography, demographics, and culture. Acknowledging both the existence of millions of Indigenous peoples who inhabited Brazil prior to the arrival of the Portuguese in 1500 and the institution of African slavery, we attempt to provide a contextualized foundation upon which we can build an understanding of Brazilian music. Following this brief overview, we describe the development of Brazilian urban music (modinha, lundu, maxixe, samba, choro, and bossa nova) in light of class divisions and race relations. In the Up Close sections, we first document the work of São Paulo’s Comunidade Samba da Vela, a community that disseminates the work of local composers. We then focus on Cris Delanno, one of Brazil’s most accomplished contemporary performers of bossa nova, who lives in Rio de Janeiro.