This article explores the practices and strategies of three groups of musicians, each in a different city in Brazil, in order to understand how musicians and the markets in which they operate co-construct present-day musical careers. Depending on their musical and geographic histories, as well as their career goals, these artists navigate a national music industry that takes interest in and rewards representations of national music, regional identity, and genre hybridity, often in combination with one another. While these market pressures occasionally intersect with the artists’ aesthetic demands, this article focuses on the way such pressures are negotiated and reflected in the music of these midstream musicians. The article centers on the interactions between musicians and a competitive bidding process known as an edital, with a particular focus on Natura Musical, the edital administered by the cosmetics company Natura. Within such interactions, Brazilian-ness (or brasilidade) is considered as a pluralistic, market-driven notion and less a strict aesthetic choice or sonic characteristic.

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