Dora Lopes – Diploma de otário
Rubens da Mangueira – Estrangeiro no samba
Jackson do Pandeiro – Três pedidos
Carmelia Alvez – Eh! boi
Evaldo Braga – Não Atenda
Buddy Rich – Heaven On Their Minds
Los Wemblers de Iquitos – Un Silbido Amoroso
Tata VIega – Give It Up For Love
Sergio Mendes and Brasil 77 – Moçambique
Ronnie Laws – Tell Me Something Good
Tati Viega again – Give It Up For Love (reprise)
Joni Mitchell – Dreamland
Luiz Gonzaga – Festa
Monty Alexander – Sly Mongoose
Byron Lee and the Dragonaires – Hot Sweet and Jumpy
Libre – Tune Up
Jimmy Scott – When Did You Leave Heaven? Tommy McCook & The Supersonics – The World Needs Love
Jackson do Pandeiro
São João Autêntico
1980 Sinter 2493-009
01 – O navio tá bom na marcha (Antonio Barros)
02 – Canoeiro novo (João Silva – Raimundo Evangelista)
03 – Sanfoneiro de vocês (Carlos Diniz – J. Nilo)
04 – Dá eu pra ela (Venâncio – Corumba)
05 – Três pedidos (Jackson do Pandeiro – Maruim)
06 – Vamos chegar pra lá (Almira Castilho)
07 – Na base da chinela (Jackson do Pandeiro – Rosil Cavalcanti)
08 – São João na roça (Antonio Barros – Jackson do Pandeiro)
09 – Acenderam a fogueira (Maruim – Jackson do Pandeiro)
10 – São João no brejo (Zé Catraca)
11 – Véspera e dia de São João (Jackson do Pandeiro – Maruim)
12 – Viva São João (Jackson do Pandeiro – Buco do Pandeiro)
Vinyl; Pro-Ject RM-5SE turntable (with Audio Technica AT440MLa cartridge), Speedbox power supply; Creek Audio OBH-15; M-Audio Audiophile 192 Soundcard ; Adobe Audition at 32-bit float 96khz; Click Repair; individual clicks and pops taken out with Adobe Audition 3.0 – dithered and resampled using iZotope RX Advanced (for 16-bit). Tags done with Foobar 2000 and Tag and Rename.
Like the last post, this is also a compilation of São João material, this time by the great Jackson do Pandeiro. As a collection, I find this to be a better listen than the Gonzaga record, something that you can put on from start to finish, in part because of the great variety here.
I think I am going to curate my own São João-themed compilation and put it out as a limited edition CD and vinyl release. I will call it “More Songs About Marriage and Corn”, and the cover art will feature 100 Polaroid close-up photos of a Festa Junina bonfire arranged in a mosaic. Production starts tomorrow.
There is no information whatsoever on the jacket of this “econo-series” budget LP by the Polygram-family Sinter label. Jackson, like Gonzaga, recorded and released hundreds of songs, released on dozens of LPs and CDs (although Jackson’s catalog is poorly represented on compact discs). The tracks on this seem to be drawn from the 1960s and 70s. I mentioned the variety earlier, which applies to the different sub-genres of festive Northeastern dance music played here, but also the instrumentation found in the arrangements. There’s saxophone, clarinet, even a tin whistle found in these groves. There is also the talented Almira Castilho on two songs. This may not be an essential record – in fact, I forgot I owned it until stumbling on it last week, and this post is officially the quickest vinyl-to-blog-rip in the history of this blog as I am normally notoriously slow and unhurried about these sorts of things. But there is still another week left of Festas Juninas during which this cute little collection is still relevant, so I moved a little quicker for you, dear readers.
01. São João na Roça (Luiz Gonzaga / Zé Dantas)
02. Fogueira de São João (Luiz Gonzaga / Carmelina Albuquerque)
03. Festa No Céu (Edgar Nunes / Zeca do Pandeiro)
04. Olha Pro Céu (Luiz Gonzaga / José Fernandes)
05. Noites Brasileiras (Luiz Gonzaga / Zé Dantas)
06. São João Antigo (Luiz Gonzaga / Zé Dantas)
07. São João no Arraiá (Zé Dantas)
08. O Passo da Rancheira (Luiz Gonzaga / Zé Dantas)
09. Dança da Moda (Luiz Gonzaga / Zé Dantas)
10. Lenda de São João (Luiz Gonzaga / Zé Dantas)
11. Mané e Zabé (Luiz Gonzaga / Zé Dantas)
12. São João do Carneirinho (Guio de Morais / Luiz Gonzaga)
Well the festas juninas have been in swing in the Nordeste for a few weeks now, and the midsummer holiday of São João (June 24) is rapidly approaching. This is, in essence, a holiday album. I believe it is the first long-player of what would turn out to be many LPs that Gonzagão released to commemorate / cash-in on this prototypically Northeastern holiday. I am not a fan of “holiday albums” of any stripe, to be honest. If I had to rank them, the list would probably mirror pretty closely how I feel about the holiday in question. Hence Halloween, Carnival, solstices and equinoxes near the top, Christmas would be at the bottom near Talk Like A Pirate Day, and São João would be somewhere in the middle with New Years Eve and Groundhog Day. It’s a lovely holiday, stretched in typically Brazilian fashion to encompass all of June and into the first week of June. But as readers of this blog know, I am by nature cantankerous and curmudgeonly, and maintaining cheeriness for such a prolonged period of time is very exhausting. Also, I’ve never been interested in marriage and I can only eat so many things made from corn.
This is the type of record that you pick a few tunes for your party playlist but don’t typically listen to from start to finish. And I think that’s fine, especially since it is actually a collection of 78s recorded and released between 1950 and 1960. In fact this appeared twice as an LP with this title: once in the late 50s and then again in 1962 with a few added tracks. LOTS of Zé Dantas here, who was Gonzaga’s most important songwriting partner aside from Humberto Teixeira. Highlights for me include Dança da moda and the wistfully melodic Noites brasileiras. I may gravitate to the latter because it is the only thing approaching a mid-tempo song here. Why do Pernambucans all have to play music so damn fast? They talk fast too. Can’t they slow down once in a while? Get off my lawn!
It is amazing how upset some people get over the idea of a cultural boycott. Perhaps that is because they actually make a difference. If they didn’t, the government of Israel and its lobbies would not be spending a boatload of money to defame the BDS movement at every turn as well as attempting to impose a gag order on artists, scholars, and intellectuals who endorse it. For that reason, I’m disabling comments for this post because I don’t have the time or energy to deal with the inevitable abusive trolls and propaganda-bots. The reality is that playing in Israel right now is on the same level as performing in South Africa during the 1980s when the full severity of apartheid could no longer be covered up by its facilitators in Europe and America. Plenty of artists continued to play in South Africa, either indifferent to the suffering or making the same type of excuses being made today by those who see no problem with performing in Israel.
As we approach the one year anniversary of the war crimes and mass slaughter of civilians in the Gaza strip, one which was openly described in genocidal terms by Israel’s far-right government, I’d like to ask you to consider signing a petition asking Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil to cancel their upcoming show in Tel Aviv. These two guys should know better than most people about the consequences of state-sponsored terrorism and censorship, having not only lived through a right-wing dictatorship (that was similarly propped up by US complicity and self-interest), but also for having paid the price for dissent, as both of them spent several years living in exile in London.
One of the interesting objections to cultural boycotts that one often hears is, “Why should the citizens of _____ suffer for the idiocy and repugnance of their government or leaders?” Well, my short answer to that might be “because they keep voting them in,” but let me try to be less crass and assume we are talking about that segment of a population, however small, that disagrees with those policies but happens to like a particular artist. This type of argument came up not long ago when American rock band Wilco chose to cancel a concert in Indiana when that state legalized the discrimination against LGBT persons as second-class citizens. It kind of blows my mind that anyone would consider the “deprived” Indiana Wilco fan as the victim in this situation. If they are really heartbroken die-hard fans, they can get in a car or buy a bus ticket and go an hour or two to the southeast or northeast and see the band perform in Cincinnati or Louisville or Chicago, or someplace else that hasn’t legalized bigotry. (“Back in the day” I actually traveled a greater distance to see an offshoot from that band, Golden Smog, play in a small Chicago club simply because they weren’t coming anywhere near where I lived.) My point is that, in spite of signs of increasing income inequality in Israel itself, its citizens are a heck of a lot more mobile than the people living in lock-down in the Occupied Territories. If they are really zealous about seeing Caetano and Gil, let them travel to do it, because they have that privilege.
If Caetano and Gil organized a concert in Gaza or the West Bank, perhaps making a public gesture towards a genuine two-state solution, a fundraiser for rebuilding, or some other act that recognized Palestinians and Israeli Arabs as worthy of being treated like human beings, then maybe I wouldn’t have a problem with a Tel Aviv concert. But of course, that is not going to happen. So the right thing for them to do is cancel. And presuming that they don’t, I encourage you to think twice about buying tickets to see them in other cities on this tour. I am sure the shows will be really good. I am also sure that a lot of you out there have seen both of these artists on numerous occasions. Consider letting this one pass and writing them a letter about why you will not be attending. You can write to their management here: Gilberto Gil (at Gege Produções), and Caetano Veloso.