Saturday, July 21, 2012

Samba #2

by Leighton Gage

I heard my first samba in 1966.
It was in a cinema on East 34th Street in New York, and the film in which it appeared was Claude Lelouche’s Un Homme et Une Femme (A Man and a Woman).

Never heard of the movie?
Then you’re probably a good deal younger than I am.
Because it was a piece of filmaking that no one of my generation (or, at least, no one without a heart of stone) is likely to forget.
Sentimental, romantic and lovely.

It blew me away.

Six years later, I arrived in Brazil. And learned that it had been composed by Baden Powell to lyrics created by Vinicius de Morães, the poet who wrote the words to The Girl from Ipanema.
The English-language version from the film goes like this:

The original title is Samba de Benção, sometimes called Samba Saravah. Here’s Vinicius himself, singing it at a live performance inMar del PlataArgentina (hence the introduction in Spanish) several years before his death.

And both, as promised in my last post, are classic versions of a samba canção, one of the many sub-genres of this style of music.



Jaden Terrell said...

Leighton, I have never seen that movie. I'll have to see if we can order it on Netflix.

Leighton Gage said...

Hi Jaden,

If you can get it, and see it, I hope you'll write to tell me what you think.
My impression is bound to be distorted, because I liked it so much and also be because it is tied-up with so many memories.
My guess, though, is that it might well have stood the rest of time.
And that you are going to enjoy it.
I hope you do.