For fans of Brazilian music and vinyl, Bazar Som Tres is the best place I found in Brazil. Sure you can find some record shops in touristy areas, but the selection is limited and the prices are super high. Bazar Som Tres is not in a touristy area. To get there you have to exit the Pelorinho and walk down Ave. Jose Joaquim Seabra, where all the cheap shops are, all the way to the end by the bus terminal. Then you go up some stairs. Look for it to the right. It's a tiny shop but other shopkeepers will know it if you ask them.
Bazar Som Tres is smaller than my bedroom but they have everything! There are records everywhere. Haniel, the owner, let me play at least 100 records. He was nice enough to pull out some things he thought I would like. I made a real mess there. I ended up buying 20 records from them--some classic MPB (Caetano, Jorge Ben, Gal Costa), some classic samba (Jose Silva, Elza Soares, Clara Nunes), some classic Batucada stuff, and more! It's overwhelming. I can't say enough about this place. I'm going back to buy more records next time I go, so don't clean Haniel out!
What to buy: Brazilian records
What to pay: Most records are R$10
I came across this shop while strolling the streets of Barra. It was actually one of my first days in a big city after almost a month that I spent in the north. I intended to buy present for my friend who is a great vinyl record collector and just loves Brazilian music. It seemed a perfect place at the right moment.
What to buy: When I came into the shop I was pleasantly surprised. The heaps of vinyl records (LPs and singles) were everywhere: on the shelves, on the floor and even on the counter. The choice was really good. I kept asking the owner about the particular authors and musicians. When he found I was quite a serious shopper, he brought several albums with special collections of rare things and tried to explain about some musicians and styles that were new for me. All LPs and singles were second hand and most of them in a decent condition.
I bought some singles with Brazilian music from the 60s and 70s, some early recordings of Chico Buarque de Hollanda, Jorge Ben Jor, Elizeth Cardoso and others. The owner gave me a good discount since I bought quite a lot :)
What to pay: I paid 5 - 10 euros for a single
If you're looking for CDs while you're in Brazil, I suggest you find a Lojas Americanas. There is one in every mall, I think. The one in Iguatemi is good. They have a lot of CDs and the prices are really good, way better than what you'd pay on an online site
What to buy: They have a lot of CDs and DVDs for that matter. What better place to get some awesome Brazilian music than Brazil?
What to pay: The most you'd pay, for a new release, is about 25-30 Reais, and it just goes down from there. After you convert that into USD or EUR, it's pretty cheap. No shipping charges!
The staff were so helpful here. I was looking for Brazillian films and couldnt tell what alot of things were. A member of staff went through all the DVD's for me and picked out all the Brazillian films... So I ended up with a pile of them... they were a relatively good price too but Uk standards anyway!
What to buy: DVD's and CD's
What to pay: On average each DVD was aboout 35 RS