Brazilian Nuggets

August 3rd, 2009
Brazilian Nuggets

long time, no post…sorry! Anyway I’ve got a good one today.

One area that has been neglected in Brazilian crate digging circles, or until recently that is, is the pre-tropicalia psyche scene. This scene is at its most derivative a straight copy of the North American nuggets garage rock scene, which is in itself pretty amazing as the dictatorship was in full swing at the time, so I can imagine the little outside culture that was coming through would have been enthusiastically  swooped upon by da youth. But there always a few bands or just a few tracks that have that famous Brazilian musical cannabalism, Os Mutantes, for example, were what happens when a Beatles cover band goes it alone. 

This scene was actually an extension of the iê-iê-iê movement and is the missing link between the jovem guarda and the Tropicalia movements. Jovem Guarda was a pretty insipid movement and produced some dreary rock ‘n roll, though there are some really swinging corkers you have to sift through a lot of “incy wincy teeny weeny yellow polka dot bikini” type covers.

So the example I have posted for you is by Wanderléa, who was one the most famous singers of the Jovem Guarda (young guard) and here she’s covering “Pushing too hard” by the Seeds, it’s a great version as you can really hear her local carioca (rio) accent with those phlegmy Rs as she belts out the (completely different) lyrics in Portuguese.

In fact this is a trend that has always existed in pop music in Brazil, take the tune of a current hit and sing totally different lyrics in Portuguese over the top, it’s a trend that continued in the eighties with rock band Capital Inicial covering Iggy’s “The passenger”, continued with Baile funk and even up till recently with Seu Jorge and Ana Carolina doing “the blower’s daughter” to pretty tortuous effect.

anyway here is Wanderlea:

vou lhe contar (pushing too hard)

I did want to do a compilation of this stuff for a label but the logistics are pretty impossible as most of it came out on labels like Phillips whose back catalogue now probably belongs to BMG/Sony or something, and would need a hefty advance. However I was reading this the other day about this guy Joel who’s got a super-hip record store in New York and is going to self-release “Brazilian Guitar Fuzz Bananas: Tropicalista Psychedelic Masterpieces, 1967–1976″ a collection that covers some of this scene. Self-release probably means grey area bootleg, but good luck to him. I, however, will be posting some more of this stuff during the week as I have a shitload of it on my hard-drive.

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