In 1996, George Michael collaborated again with the Red Hot Organization for their Brazilian theme album “Red Hot + Rio.” He donated the song ‘Desafinado’ to the charity album, his duet with Astrud Gilberto.
This was the seventh “Red Hot + …” theme albums to raise funds for AIDS organizations and to heighten awareness of the disease. The “Red Hot + Rio” began a number of projects focused on the music and culture of South America as well as to raise money and awareness to fight the HIV/AIDS epidemic in that part of the world. Brazil has the most significant rate of HIV infection in Latin America, with an AIDS case level that ranks among the five highest in the world.
“Red Hot + Rio” merges traditional and contemporary Brazilian acts with European and American pop stars. It is a tribute to the bossa nova music of Brazil, especially the music of Antonio Carlos Jobim. It features the duet between George Michael and Astrud Gilberto, while the late legendary Antonio Carlos Jobim performs his song “How Insensitive” with accompaniment from Sting.
The tracks in the “Red Hot + Rio” album, which was released on October 15, 1996, are as follows:
- “Use A Sua Cabeca” by Money Mark
- “Corcovado” by Everything But The Girl
- “Desafinado” by Astrud Gilberto and George Michael
- “Non-Fiction Burning” by P.M. Dawn & Flora Purim & Airto
- “The Boy From Ipanema” by Crystal Waters
- Interlude 1/ Red Hot + Rio by Various artists
- “Seguranca” by Maxwell
- “E Preciso Perdoar” by Ryuichi Sakamoto & Cesária Évora & Caetano Veloso
- Interlude 2 / Red Hot + Rio by Various artists
- “Water To Drink” by Incognito & Omar & Ana Caram
- “Dancing” by Milton Nascimento
- “How Insensitive” by Sting & Antonio Carlos Jobim
- “Waters Of March” by Marisa Monte & David Byrne
- Interlude 3 / Red Hot + Rio by Various artists
- “One Note Samba / Surfboard” by Stereolab & Herbie Mann
- Interlude 4 / Red Hot + Rio by Various artists
- “Black Orpheus Dub “by Mad Professor
- “Maracatu Atomico” by Dj Soul Slinger & Chico Science & Nação Zumbi
- “Sambadrome” by Funk ‘N’ Lata
- “Refazenda” by Gilberto Gil
- “Preciso Dizer Que Te Amo” by Cazuza & Bebel Gilberto
George previously contributed to the charity organization’s efforts, donating three new songs to the second album in the series, the Red Hot + Dance — Too Funky, Happy and Do You Really Want to Know.
John Carlin, a co-creator of the “Red Hot + …” album series praised George for his generosity and contributions:
Michael’s long term commitment to this cause, the tens of millions of dollars raised as a result of his efforts and the fans reached by his involvement make him one of the real saints in the fight against AIDS.Inside Story of Red Hot + Dance
The “Red Hot + Rio” album was a huge success, with the album distributed in retail shops such as Urban Outfitters and Gap in the U.S.
- ‘Too Funky:’ Story of A George Michael Charity Record
- George Michael’s Acts of Charity
- List of Duets and Backup Vocals
- Inside Story of Red Hot + Dance
- George Michael on Fame and Freedom (New York Times, 1990)