Demônios de Garoa (1958) & Os Demônios de Garoa (1961)


Demônios da Garoa (1958) [Odeon – MOCB 3023]

1 Promessa do Jacob 2:51
2 Maloca dos Meus Amores 3:12
3 A Lei No Morro 2:30
4 Lenço Na Molera 2:29
5 O Parque Chegou 2:31
6 Malvina 2:50
7 Bem Feito 2:53
8 Deixa Que Vá 2:37
9 Cidade do Barulho 3:09
10 Um Samba Diferente 2:18
11 A Lei do Inquilinato 3:09
12 Joga A Chave 3:36


Os Demônios da Garoa (1961) [Odeon]

13 Um Copo… Uma Garrafa… Um Pente 2:47
14 Barracão 3:06
15 Olha o Gato 2:53
16 Não Emplaca 61 3:02
17 Saudosa Maloca 2:48
18 Ponto de Interrogação 2:31
19 A Voz do Morro 3:07
20 Tu Te Da Ma 2:49
21 Eu Quero Um Samba 2:19
22 Já Tem Dono 2:32
23 Iracema 5:20
24 Não Bobeia Kalamazu 2:23

EMI 2003 2-em-1 Reissue
Total time 67:09

Like most of the EMI 2 for 1 series of Brazilian reissues, this one does not feature consecutive releases from these masters of São Paulo-style samba, but there is nothing to complain about — both of these are stone classics. If you are only accustomed to hearing carioca samba (from Rio), then you are ears are in for a different listening experience.

I will confess – the Demônios da Garoa first came to my attention because of their association with Adoniran Barbosa, whose sambas they made famous. Although Adoniran was a well-known radio and film actor as well as a samba composer, he didn’t actually record his own sambas until the 1970s. Those are the versions I first heard, with his hoarse and slightly-flat cigarette-butt voice bringing his colorful characters to life. Needless to say, hearing the Demônios original recordings came something of a shock to me as they proceeded to perform them with perfect multi-part harmonies and tight instrumentation. Also, they are kind of wacky and sing in silly voices sometimes – Adoniran’s sambas are usually injected with a dose of humor, but once again I had become accustomed to his dour delivery which is in contrast to the Demônios campy, sometimes nearly ‘vaudevillian’ interpretations (to make a crude North American analogy). These two albums only have a handful of Barbosa’s tunes spread across them, but they are all MONSTERS OF SAMBA: Malvina, Joga a Chave, Saudosa Maloca and Iracema. There is also a surprisingly nice version of Zé Keti’s “A Voz do Morro” (surprising because of their very different styles), and a song that some João Gilberto fans might recognize from a version he recorded later, “Eu Quero Um Samba.” There are also plenty of other great respectable sambas from other composers here – “Promessa do Jacob,” “Barracão” and “Não Emplaca 61.” The CD reissue includes the liner notes from the first of the two albums. Although Demônios de Garoa have stayed tirelessly active (and earned a Guiness-book entry for longest-continually-running musical group in Brazil), their golden years were in the 50s and 60s, and you don’t have to look further than these two records to see why.

Full composer credits are in the ID TAGS as well as the Portuguese accents and diacriticals.

I just got back from a visit to São Paulo, where I actually saw “garoa” for the first time — its something between rain and snow, but *not* like hail. Also, São Paulo has donuts.