...continuing the Brazil week...

The Brazil feature began when I got an email pointing me towards some South American footballandmusic – in which all the songs actually originated from just person. The same time that I receive this mail I had just been looking through my collection of footie and music and saw this same name a few times too. This coincidence was no coincidence… or something… We need to tell the people about this.

» I was going to write and expand more about today’s subject, but werk elsewhere has meant that I don’t have the time, so I’m being lazyarse by copy&pasting the original message and calling it a guest post by Fredorrarci from Sport Is A TV Show.

Take it away sir:

I saw a couple of weeks ago that you posted the song from that Nike ad. That’s ‘Mas Que Nada’ by Sérgio Mendes (though the one in the ad is actually by Tamba Trio). It was written (and originally performed) by Jorge Ben:

Jorge Ben

(I’ll interject here to post an abridged bio):

“Born in Rio de Janeiro in 1940, Ben took up bossa nova guitar playing after hearing João Gilberto but found the style too complex to execute. This led to his developing his own approach to the bossa nova that focused on playing the guitar as one would a bass — his early recordings are in fact bass-less. His first big hit as a singer/songwriter came at the age of 23 with “Mas, Que Nada.” The song’s subtle bossa nova groove proved so seductive that it was quickly covered by a number of Brazilian artists, most successfully by Sergio Mendes…

…It was from the late ’60s to mid-’70s that Ben established himself as a songwriting force within Brazil. Over the next ten to 15 years he expanded his reach, with varying success, to Europe and America (he’s more popular in Europe than America). In 1989 he released the album Benjor, simultaneously announcing that he was changing his last name to Benjor*

- Extract from allmusic. Further reading for you at Wikipedia.

*The reason for that slight name change reportedly came about because of the music rights as a composer and he was concerned that royalties for his songs were being sent to George Benson and not him. I can’t remember where I read that now. Do your own googling to find the full story.

Anyways please continue Fred:

His original version (of Mas Que Nada) was written and recorded in 1963:

Jorge Ben » Jorge Ben – Mas Que Nada

Better than that, though, is another Jorge Ben song called ‘Ponta de Lança Africano (Umbabarauma)’, which is about a fictional footballer. (“Ponta de lança” literally means “point of the spear” and is a term used for an attacking midfielder.) I don’t want to oversell this or anything, but it’s one of the best things I’ve ever ever ever heard.

(He’s right you know):

Jorge Ben » Jorge Ben – Ponta de Lança Africano (Umbabarauma)

Ben is mad about football, basically, especially Flamengo.
(From Wikipedia):

He is also a big fan of Clube de Regatas do Flamengo, a Brazilian football club, located in Rio de Janeiro, where Zico, Junior and Leandro are among former stars…. Flamengo’s crest also features in the cover of the 1969 album “Jorge Ben.

This is him singing the Flamengo club song:

Jorge Ben » Jorge Ben – Hino do Flamengo

Here’s ‘Camisa 10 Da Gávea’, all about Zico:

Zico » Jorge Ben – Camisa 10 Da Davea

There’s also ‘Fio Maravilha’ which is named after a footballer. The story behind it:

João Batista de Sales – better known as Fio Maravilha, is a former Brazilian football player. In Brazil he played for Flamengo, Paysandu Sport Club, CEUB, Desportiva and São Cristóvão. Later he moved to the United States, where he played for the New York Eagles, the Monte Belo Panthers and San Francisco Mercury.

He is perhaps most famous for the hit single “Fio Maravilha” that was written about him in 1972 by Jorge Ben. The musician attended a friendly game between Flamengo and Benfica in the Maracanã stadium. Fio Maravilha was left out of Flamengo’s starting lineup by coach Mário Zagallo, but after a chorus of fans demanded that he play, he was brought in as a substitute. After 33 minutes in the second half he scored the goal (“the goal of an angel”) that was immortalized in the song

Read the Full entry

Jorge Ben » Jorge Ben – Fio Maravilha

Live version

I want to close this one out for now… there is still lots of material from him, as Fredorrarci says, Jorge is mad about football… but for the moment here’s a closer:

» Jorge Ben – Cade O Penalty

  A postscript though with a shout out to Any Major Dude With Half A Heart who coincidently …ah that coincidence… posted a Football and Music-related song (featuring Jorge Ben once more) – a song which Rod Stewart ripped off and called his own. Seriously he did.

Oh there’s where I saw the George Benson thing.

2 Comments

  1. Ponta de Lanca Africana is a classic, great tune!

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