Brazil's most successful musical export during the 1960s, Sergio Mendes was a songwriter, musician and bandleader who merged the gentle sway of bossa nova with glossy American pop for a series of easy listening classics, including "Mas Que Nada," "Constant Rain," "The Fool on the Hill" and "The Look of Love. " Having spent his formative years in his native Brazil playing with the likes of Antonio Carlos Jobim, Mendes rode the bossa nova's wave of popularity to the United States, where he struck gold in the mid-1960s with his group, Brasil '66. Their high-gloss, cocktail party-friendly sound made them instant favorites of aspiring social climbers and middle class listeners alike until the early 1970s, when changing musical tastes rendered Mendes' music unhip. He spent much of the next two decades parlaying his sound to large audiences outside of America, which eventually reignited an interest in his work during the lounge music revival in the early '90s. He returned to the charts in 2006 with a new version of "Mas Que Nada," featuring the Black Eyed Peas, which led to more celebrity collaborations and an Oscar nod for "Real in Rio" from the animated film "Rio" (2012). Throughout the tumult of his career, Mendes remained dedicated to the smooth, sexy and timeless rhythm of bossa nova, like his music, never quite went out of style.