Primordial Samba

Do You Know What the World is Losing?

Me left, Randy Roberts, known here in Brazil as ‘Pardal’…Portuguese for ‘Sparrow’. To my left, your right, is João do Boi (John of the Ox), who might be described as Brazil’s analogue to Son House.

João do Boi is part of the end of something. He grew up without electricity. He didn’t listen to or learn music from the radio. He didn’t listen to or learn music from records on a turntable. He learned from his parents, extended family and friends. Who likewise learned from such, extending back through the generations of now unknown people who contributed to this music.

João’s music is the nascent music of Africans in Brazil, the source, which, like the music of Africans in America would conquer an entire nation.

But the difference is that every twelve year old with a guitar in the United States (and England and Japan…) knows about and probably plays the blues. The blues are the subject of countless books and PhD dissertations.

While of the progenitor of the music of a nation larger even than the contiguous continental United States — the music of a nation the name of which is almost synonymous with music — almost nothing is known. Even in Brazil.

What do you make of that my friend? ???