Sister of Miúcha, Ana de Hollanda, and Chico Buarque, Cristina Buarque had her first experience in a professional setting on Chico Buarque's Chico Buarque, Vol. 3, interpreting the song "Sem Fantasia" (1968). Her first solo LP came in 1974, Cristina, with her biggest hit, "Quantas Lágrimas" (Manacéia). The album was dedicated to the recuperation of the work of important sambistas, which remained the main focus of her work. Her second album, Prato e Faca (1976), had sambas by Heitor dos Prazeres, Geraldo Pereira, Jamelão, Bide/Marçal, and Alberto Lonato, among others. Her 1978 LP Arrebém had the participation of the Velha Guarda da Portela on the track "Muito Embora Abandonado" (Mijinha/Francisco Santana). In 1979 she was invited to sing on the LP Clementina e Convidados, singing in duo with the old queen of samba, Clementina de Jesus. As a member of the Turma do Funil, Cristina Buarque recorded "Se Eu Fosse Teu Patrão" (Chico Buarque) for Chico's A Ópera do Malandro. In 1980, her Vejo Amanhecer had the participation of the group Época de Ouro. In 1981, the Velha Guarda da Portela and Clementina de Jesus participated in her LP Cristina. In the same year she recorded "Pode Ser?" (Geraldo Pereira/Marino Pinto) on the Geraldo Pereira tribute, and, four years later, she recorded "Aquele Bilhetinho" (Nelson Cavaquinho/Augusto Garcez/Wilson Canegal) on the tribute to Nelson Cavaquinho, As Flores em Vida. Cristina e Mauro Duarte (1985), in which she re-recorded "Quantas Lágrimas," had the participation of Paulo César Pinheiro on "Reserva de Domínio." In 1988 she recorded "Morro do Sossego" (Candeia/Artur Poerner) for the tribute Candeia. In the next year she participated in another tribute, this time to Paulo da Portela, Homenagem a Paulo da Portela, recording a duo with Mauro Duarte, "Quem Espera Sempre Alcança." Her CD Resgate, which had as guests Manacéia, Monarco, the Velha Guarda da Portela, Walter Alfaiate, the Orquestra de Cordas, and several other illustrious figures, was recorded for the Japanese market in 1990 and only released in Brazil four years later. Her 1970 research on Candeia yielded the recuperation of two unpublished and unknown songs by the sambista, "Luz de Verão" and "Vem pra Portela," with lyrics added posthumously by Marquinhos de Oswaldo Cruz. The songs were recorded by Cristina Buarque on her 1998 album Eterna Chama/Candeia. Her 2000 tribute to Wilson Batista, Ganha-se Pouco, Mas É Divertido, had the participation of Paulinho da Viola, Roberto Silva, and Chico Buarque.
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