Global Politics

Global Hit

Our global hit today features a government official. He's served as Brazil's minister of culture since 2003. But he is better known around the world as a singer-songwriter.

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We're talking about Gilberto Gil.

He's just completed a US tour promoting his new album,"Banda Larga Cordel."

"Banda Larga Cordel" means "broadband pamphlet".

It refers to different ways of sharing information, from the internet to the old standby, the printed page.

Gil has championed the issue of internet access for everyone in Brazil.

And his new CD is a look at the use of technology and communication around the world.

In the song "broadband pamphlet," he says in an almost prophetic tone: "he who doesn't see broadband cable, is going to live without really knowing the world".

Gil has been opening his live performances with a short improvisation on the Nokia cell phone ring tone.

Still, he also signals some ambivalence about all this technology.

In the song "maquina de ritmo", he talks about the computerized beat of the rhythm machine, he calls it "algorithms without passion."

Gilberto Gil is currently touring Europe with his "banda larga."