Gilberto Gil in concert (credit: Elmundo.es)
Gilberto Gil calls the songs on O Sol de Oslo (1998), ‘backlander music.” It is an interesting term. We’re used to thinking in terms of the back country as being some remote place where nothing much happens. The big cities are where everything important is supposed to happen. Here is where styles are defined and evaluated. Here’s where what’s hot and what’s not is decided. Every other place is in the margins.
Well, Gil turns that assumption on its head. He posits that ALL of Brazil’s great indigenous music comes from the back country. Without it, everything else remaining in Brazilian music would be a stale pop derivative. That’s why he’s devoted his life to promoting the music of Brazil’s poor, working class and ethnic minorities.
Allmusic.com describes Tata Engenho Novo (hear) as a “Northeastern coco.” It is a furiously fast vocal track which races breathlessly from start to finish. Paula Maya, KBCS’ Brazilian music DJ, called it a collaboration in the Bahian native people’s musical style. When you listen to it, you’ll be in for a fun vocal romp!
Here is another excellent review of O Sol de Oslo.
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