SEASON 1 | EPISODE 4
Hello and welcome to Brazilian English Podcast, I’m your host and teacher Derek Noble and in this podcast we talk about Brazilian culture and entertainment to help Brazilian students of English reach fluency in English and to spread our values and beliefs worldwide. Every episode is full of rich vocabulary for all levels of English also full of content related to a universe that, as we know, is enormous and interesting: I’m talking about Brazilian culture.
Yo, guys, what’s up? How do you do? I truly hope you guys are feeling great today. In this episode of the Brazilian English Podcast, we’re gonna talk about Music. Brazilian Music is full of rythms and mixtures that amount1 to a great sauce2 for our entertainment. It is hard to describe all the forms of musical expression in only one podcast, but I’ll try to do my best.
We could start with the classics, of course. Elis Regina and Tom Jobim are the internationally famous singers of the album Elis & Tom. Observe the pronunciation of the word singer, okay? We say singer, yes. This album was recorded in Los Angeles in 1974. Yes, Elis & Tom is famous worldwide3. In this album, we find beautiful tunes such as “Águas de Março” and “Corcovado”, played in the rythm of Bossa Nova, or new trend, a lyrical fusion of samba and jazz.
By the way, Samba is the musical foundation of Brazilian Music. The rythm travelled from Bahia to Rio de Janeiro in the beginning of the 20th century and there it exploded in the format that would originate Brazilian Carnival. Carnaval or Carnival is the beautiful parade4 we see around Brazil during summertime. It is a culltural manifestation that involves both music and dance, but we’ll have more opportunities to talk about it. Great names of Samba are the bands Fundo de Quintal, Martinho da Vila, Zeca Pagodinho and Dona Ivone Lara, who died recently, unfortunately. All of these musicians have or had strong popular roots5, which seem to be the reason why their music, in spite of6 having an apparently simple melody and lyrics, touches our hearts deeply.
It is during the 60s that MPB or Brazilian Popular Music was created. Its famous icons are Novos Baianos, Jorge Ben Jor, Chico Buarque and Dominguinhos. MPB artists and audiences were largely connected with the so-called7 intelectual class of society, which caused it to be known as university music. That is still true nowadays, I had a lot of classmates in university that loved MPB, specifically for their political choices and their attempts to praise national high-quality music, instead of listening to foreign artists.
In the 80s, we witnessed8 the rising of a style of Rock called B-Rock. Its lyrics were focused on the reality of the young middle-class rebelious teenager but also with a temper of political atitude seeing that those were the last years of the military rule in Brazil and things were becoming loose9 and relaxed. It’s the type of sound of the beach, you remember some actors such as Kadu Moliterno surfing in Rio. The most prominent names are Legião Urbana, Paralamas do Sucesso, Cazuza, Ultraje a rigor and Engenheiros do Hawai or Hawaian Engineers, if you prefer, hehe. The thing about this period of Brazilian music is the creativity of their names and the influences of radio stations such as Fluminense FM. It all depended on the station’s approval and then it would become a hit and sell a lot of albums in Brazil. The famous Jabá is also something to mention in this podcast. Some bands would pay to appear, of course.
Nowadays, we don’t even know what this is. Music streaming services have made many Brazilian artists famous even worldwide. Anitta is the symbol of the simbiotic aspect between Brazilian music and dance. She is the most famous pop artist of this generation and has influenced a lot of people in Brazil. Her lyrics are catchy10, her songbeat is fresh and original and her behaviour is what some people may call empowering, specially to women. She is getting more famous outside Brazil for one specific trait: she speaks English. She can sing in English and Spanish. Her hits “Paradinha”, “Downtown” and “Bang” have reached more than 800 million views altogether on YouTube.
Well, guys, this is it for this podcast. Of course I missed a lot of names, songs and characteristics of Brazilian Music, but I tried to list a few topics to start from, specially if you’re a foreigner and is getting to know Brazil. Now, tell me in the comments: What kind of music do you like? What kind of music is famous in your state? What is your favourite band or singer? I’ll talk to you later with more podcasts like this. Bye bye!
1 – amount – compõe
2 – sauce – molho
3 – worldwide – mundialmente
4 – parade – desfile
5 – roots – raízes
6 – in spite of – apesar de
7 – so-called – assim chamadas, suposta
8 – witnessed – testemunhamos
9 – loose – frouxas
10 – catchy – cativante