Santo Amaro

Lyrics from “Santo Amaro” by Aldir Blanc, Luiz Claudio Ramos & Franklin da Flauta (1978)

Eu ia a pé lá da ladeira Santo Amaro // I’d stroll down Santo Amaro street
até a rua do Catete num sobrado onde você residia // to that house on Rua do Catete where you used to live
e te levava prum passeio em Paquetá // And take you out to Paquetá
onde nasceu num pic-nic o nosso rancho, o Ameno Resedá  // Where, during a picnic, our rancho Ameno Resedá was born
Verde, grená e amarelo nossas cores // Green, grenadine and yellow, our colors
Resedá, vocês são flores como flor era a Papoula do Japão // Resedá, you’re all flowers just as Papoula do Japão (Japanese poppy) was a flower
Tua rival saiu na Flor de Abacate // Your rival went out with Flor de Abacate (avocado flower)
de destaque no enredo da Rainha de Sabá // star of their parade about the Queen of Sheba (1924)
Os lampiões, os vagalumes // The lanterns, the lightning bugs*
você triste com ciúmes //  You, sad and jealous
eu charlando, resmungando que melhor era acabar // Me grumbling and griping that it would be better to just break up
Pobre farsante de teatro ambulante // Poor farceur of the street operetta
meu amor de estudante não soube representar // wasn’t able to portray my love
e o casamento aconteceu // And the marriage happened
vieram filhos, muitos netos // and children came, many grandchildren
muitas dores, muitos tetos // many griefs; many roofs
mas o amor a tudo isso ultrapassou // But love overcame all of that
Hoje, sozinho, eu voltei feito andorinha // Today, alone, like a swallow I returned
à Pedra da Moreninha onde tudo começou // to the Pedra da Moreninha* where everything began
Olhando o mar, pensei na vida ao teu lado // Gazing at the sea, I thought about life by your side
como um choro do Callado, um piano em Nazareth // Like a choro by Callado, a piano in Nazareth
Saudade grande o dia inteiro // Immense saudade the whole day through
mas com jeito de alegria // But with that cheerful charm
do pandeiro de Gilberto no Jacob // of Gilberto’s pandeiro in Jacob
Pra cada dó, um sol maior, um lá sereno // For every do, a major sol, a serene la
a harmonia do ameno // the harmony of the ameno (pleasant)
o amor do resedá // the love of the resedá
Eu funcionário aposentado, coração não conformado  // I, a retired civil servant, unreconciled heart
antigo e novo feito lua em Paquetá // Old and new, like the moon on Paquetá
Passou a vida com os ranchos, desfilando // Life passed by, with the ranchos, parading
União da Aliança, caprichosa em estrelas desenganos  // União da Aliança, capricious, disappointments in stars*
desci por ela //I ambled down it
como desço ainda hoje //  as I still amble down today
a ladeira Santo Amaro até o sobrado que o metrô matou // Santo Amaro street, to the house the metro destroyed
Bom era ir, batendo perna, tomar chope na Taberna // What a joy it was to stroll down to drink a chopp at the Taberna [da Glória]
é outra história, é uma glória, ser da Glória // It’s something else- it’s a glory to be from Glória
[o que é que há ? // you hear me?]
O rosto dela vela o Rio de Janeiro  // Her face holds vigil over Rio de Janeiro
como a virgem do outeiro // like the virgin of the Outeiro
guarda o Ameno Resedá // protects Ameno Resedá

— Commentary —

Ameno Resedá picnic in Paquetá, 1911. Image via  "Ameno Resedá: o rancho que foi escola" by Jota Efegê.
Ameno Resedá picnic in Paquetá, 1911. Image via  “Ameno Resedá: o rancho que foi escola” by Jota Efegê.
Rua Santo Amaro in 1956. The road links the Rio neighborhoods of Glória and Santa Teresa. This photo is around No. 124 on street.
Rua Santo Amaro in 1956. The road links the Rio neighborhoods of Glória and Santa Teresa. This photo is around No. 124 on street.

Ameno Resedá was arguably Rio de Janeiro’s most important rancho – the street Carnaval groups that predominated in Rio in the early twentieth century, before the emergence of samba schools. Ameno Resedá began a tradition of ranchos with especially operatic characteristics — elaborate costumes and characters and the performance of slow, serene marches that told stories; this led the press to call Ameno Resedá a teatro lírico ambulante (something like “street operetta”), which the song makes reference to. Because of the rancho’s innovations, which included the incorporation of an enredo – or theme for the march – and a wind section, Ameno Resedá also earned the designation rancho-escola, which is one of the possible explanations for the origin of the name escola de samba  – samba school. (More on ranchos at the bottom of this post, if you’re interested.)

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Announcement for the inaugural ball at the Ameno Resedá club on Rua do Cattete 206  Jornal do Brasil – 13 April 1907
Pastoras of Ameno Resedá, Carnaval 1911. Enredo Côrte de Belzebuth.
Pastoras of Ameno Resedá, Carnaval 1911, the year Ameno Resedá paraded for Brazil’s president at the Palácio de Guanabára with the enredo Court of Belzebuth.

 


In this song, Aldir Blanc retraces the history of Ameno Resedá, which was indeed founded during a picnic on Paquetá – a bucolic island borough of Rio de Janeiro – on February 17, 1907, with headquarters on Rua do Catete, and which paraded in Carnaval from 1908 til 1941. Blanc tells the story of the rancho through the story of a romance, blurring a love story with the story of his love for Ameno Resedá itself.

Vagalume – which also means “lightning bug,” a creature that makes an appearance in the song – was the nickname of the Carnaval chronicler and founding member of Ameno Resedá, Francisco Guimarães, who created the city’s first news column dedicated exclusively to Carnaval in Jornal do Brasil. (He is no. 13 in the picture above.) Ameno means “pleasant” and resedá refers to the reseda flower; as the group was deciding upon a name, they reportedly considered first the sabugueiro in bloom, but wanted a flower with a more pleasant scent, and arrived at “Ameno Resedá.”

Cover of Jota Efegê's 1965 book
Cover of Jota Efegê’s 1965 book “Ameno Resedá: o rancho que foi escola”.

Flor de Abacate (avocado flower) and Papoula de Japão (Japanese poppy) were other important ranchos that followed Ameno Resedá’s model, along with União da Aliança, which is mentioned toward the end of the song. (*The line that follows União da Aliança – “caprichosa, em estrelas desenganos” – might be referring to that rancho or other ranchos; several ranchos had “estrelas” in their name.) The Queen of Sheba was the theme of Flor de Abacate’s carnaval parade – its enredo – in Carnaval 1924.

In this 1955 recording, Donga, Pixinguinha and João da Baiana play Álvaro Sandim’s 1913 polka (adapted to choro) “Flor de Abacate,” a tribute to Sandim’s rancho, another of Rio’s most important and beloved:

View from Pedra da Moreninha, Paquetá.
View from Pedra da Moreninha, Paquetá.

Pedra da Moreninha is a rock and look-out point on Paquetá that takes its name from Joaquim Manuel de Macedo’s classic 1844 novel A Moreninha; in the story, the moreninha gazes from a high rock in Paquetá out over the sea, anxiously awaiting the return of her beau, Augusto. As founders of Ameno Resedá recalled, the picnic where the rancho was founded took place under a mango tree right near Pedra da Moreninha.

Joaquim Callado (1848-1880) was a flautist and composer who formed what’s believed to have been Rio de Janeiro’s first choro group, Choro do Callado, in 1870, made up of two guitars, a cavaquinho, and Callado’s flute. The phrase “choro do Callado” could be referring to the group but more likely refers to any choro he composed.

Taberna da Glória in 1972. Taberna da Glória still exists today, across Rua do Catete from the beginning of Rua Santo Amaro. Photo via Rio de Janeiro Memoria&Fotos (Facebook).
Taberna da Glória in 1972. Taberna da Glória still exists today, across Rua do Catete from the beginning of Rua Santo Amaro. Photo via Rio de Janeiro Memoria&Fotos (Facebook).

Ernesto Nazareth (1863-1934) was a pianist who earned a living playing scores at music stores in Rio and who, over the course of the twentieth century, earned due recognition as one of Brazil’s greatest composers. Author of some of the most beautiful melodies in the Brazilian canon, Nazareth was affiliated with Ameno Resedá and composed the polka “Ameno Resedá” for the rancho in 1912; the song was recorded in 1914 by Grupo do Louro, and has since become one of Nazareth’s most recorded compositions:

Gilberto d’Avila played pandeiro with Jacob do Bandolim – the Gilberto and Jacob that the song makes reference to.

Many homes and buildings were destroyed during the construction of the metro in the 1970s. I’ve included photos below of Rua do Catete in 1906 and Rua do Catete during metro construction, around 1977.

Nossa Senhora da Glória do Outeiro
Nossa Senhora da Glória do Outeiro

“Outeiro” literally means small hill, but here is referring to the cathedral of Our Lady of Glory of Outeiro da Glória, which sits atop a small hill overlooking the neighborhood, and gave the neighborhood its name.

Ranchos

Ranchos emerged first in northeastern Brazil, particularly Bahia, inspired in Portuguese Christmas celebrations that culminated on January 6: Three Kings Day of the Catholic church, and in CandombléFestival de Oxalá, the day to worship Oxalá, the Candomblé deity syncretized with Jesus.  In groups known as ranchos — which can mean something like religious procession — singers called pastores and pastoras (shepherds) danced door-to-door in flashy clothes with small orchestras, asking for money. They always set out dancing toward a Nativity scene, the object of their worship. Ranchos maintained this largely Afro-Brazilian religious aspect until the founding of Ameno Resedá in 1907.

The Pernambucan Hilário Jovino Ferreira was a pivotal figure in popularizing ranchos for Carnaval in Rio. A son of freed slaves, Hilário made his name as a Carnival booster and rabble-rouser in Bahia. He moved from Salvador, Bahia, to the Saúde neighborhood of Rio de Janeiro in 1872, and quickly became well-known, a regular at the homes of Carnaval fixtures like Tia Ciata, alongside such illustrious figures as Donga, Pixinguinha, and João da Baiana.

Rancho Caprichosos de Estopa, with the porta-estandarte Celia Afonso vaguely visible in the middle.
Rancho Caprichosos de Estopa, with the porta-estandarte Celia Afonso (vaguely) visible in the middle.

When Hilário moved to Rio he joined the already existing rancho Dois de Ouros, on Morró da Conceição. But he ended up arguing with the rancho’s organizers, and on January 6, 1894, founded the rancho Rei dos Ouros.  Rei dos Ouros set itself apart by parading during Carnaval, rather than January 6, and introducing greater female participation and the use of a  porta-estandarte — a woman parading with the rancho’s standard, a tradition that was passed on to samba schools.

Main float, Clube dos Fenianos, Carnaval 1934.
Main float, Clube dos Fenianos, Carnaval 1934.

Ranchos offered a more elaborate form of revelry for groups that had previously paraded in more tumultuous and clamorous street groups known as cordões, and quickly became the most popular form of Carnaval celebration among Rio’s less privileged classes. They were known as pequenas sociedades (small societies), sharing the Carnaval stage on Avenida Rio Branco in the 1920s and 1930s with the more well-to-do classes’ grandes sociedades: clubs of the white middle class and aristocracy that had emerged in the late 1860s and held European-style processions with floats. The most important of the grandes sociedades were Tenentes do Diabo; os Democráticos (still a popular club in Rio today, and the official “padrinho” [patron] of Ameno Resedá);  and os Fenianos.  Both pequenos and grandes sociedades lasted until the early 1940s, when samba schools overshadowed them for good.

The serene lyricism of ranchos’ music — particularly that of Ameno Resedá and ranchos that followed the rancho-escola’s lead, like Flor de Abacate and Lira de Ouro — led to the development of the marcha-rancho, the most poetic of Carnaval musical genres. Marcha-ranchos are nostalgic and sentimental, with a slower tempo than the marchinhas that were also gaining popularity at the time.  Some examples include “Pastorinhas” (João de Barro & Noel Rosa); “Os rouxinóis” (Lamartine Babo); “Rancho da Praça Onze” (João Roberto Kelly & Francisco Anísio); and “Bandeira branca” (Max Nunes & Laércio Alves).

Trolley tracks being laid on Rua do Catete in 1906. In the photo we see Palácio do Catete and next to it, Escola Rodrigues Alves, which was demolished during metro construction.

Trolley tracks being laid on Rua do Catete in 1906. In the photo we see Palácio do Catete and next to it, Escola Rodrigues Alves, which was demolished during metro construction. Photo: Augusto Malta.

Metro construction on R. do Catete, 1977.
Metro construction on R. do Catete, 1977. Photo via Rio de Janeiro Memoria&Fotos (Facebook).

Main sources for this post: Ameno Resedá: o rancho que foi escola by Jota Efegê; Escolas de Samba do Rio de Janeiro by Sérgio Cabral (2011); Uma história da música popular brasileira, by Jairo Severiano (2008);  100 anos de Carnaval no Rio de Janeiro, by Haroldo Costa; website of Universidade Federal Fluminense.

Bandalhismo

“Bandalhismo” by Aldir Blanc and João Bosco, 1980

Meu coração tem butiquins imundos // My heart has squalid taverns
Antros de ronda, vinte-e-um, purrinha // Dives of ronda, blackjack, purrinha [pub games]
Onde trêmulas mãos de vagabundo // Where the trembling hands of vagabonds
Batucam samba-enredo na caixinha // Beat samba-enredos on matchboxes

Perdigoto, cascata, tosse, escarro // Splutter, swagger, cough, phlegm [also can mean a low-down person]
Um choro soluçante que não pára // A sobbing cry that doesn’t stop
Piada suja, bofetão na cara // Dirty joke, a blow to the face
E essa vontade de soltar um barro… // And that urge to take a dump

Como os pobres otários da Central // Like the poor suckers at Central Station
Já vomitei sem lenço e sonrisal // I’ve vomited without a handkerchief and antacid
o P.F. de rabada com agrião… // The P.F. (prato feito) of oxtail with watercress…

Mais amarelo do que arroz-de-forno // Paler than baked rice
Voltei pro lar, e em plena dor-de-corno // I went home, and in the heat of jealous passion
Quebrei o vídeo da televisão // I broke the television screen

— Interpretation —

João Bosco and Aldir Blanc
João Bosco and Aldir Blanc

“Bandalhismo” showcases poet-lyricist Aldir Blanc‘s refined literary side – and how it meshes with vulgarity and humor in his lyrics – and his exquisite portrayals of Rio de Janeiro’s carousing lower classes. The song is a revision of Augusto dos Anjos’ 1902 poem “Vandalismo” (Vandalism, translated below). The symbolist poem begins with “My heart has immense cathedrals” — which Blanc turned into “squalid taverns” — and ends with “I broke the image of my own dreams,” which Blanc twisted into “I broke the television screen.” Blanc deftly adapted Anjos’ sonnet – set in a bygone aristocratic Brazil – into a present-day, hair-raising depiction of a bum’s life at a bar, ending with a comment on the vulgar centrality of the television.

Bandalhismo comes from the word bandalho, which means screw-up or good-for-nothing; bandalhismo essentially refers to the goings-about of a bum.  The soft samba is the title track of João Bosco’s 1980 album, and includes a guest appearance by Paulinho da Viola.

prato feito – referred to in the song by its abbreviation, P.F. – is a generally cheap plate served at lower end restaurants and bars, with rice, beans, meat, salad and fries (with variations of course).

The poem:

“Vandalismo” by Augusto dos Anjos (1902)

Meu coração tem catedrais imensas // My heart has immense cathedrals
Templos de priscas e longínquas datas // Temples of Priscas and far-off dates
Onde um nume de amor, em serenatas // Where a numen of love, in serenades
Canta a aleluia virginal das crenças // Sings the virginal aleluya of beliefs

Na ogiva fúlgida e nas colunatas // In the shining ogive and in the collonade
Vertem lustrais irradiações intensas // Rush intense purificatory radiations
Cintilações de lâmpadas suspensas // The sparkling of hanging lamps
E as ametistas e os florões e as pratas // And the amethysts and finials and silvers

Como os velhos Templários medievais // Like the ancient medieval Templars
Entrei um dia nessas catedrais // I entered one of these cathedrals
E nesses templos claros e risonhos … // And in these temples bright and cheerful…

E erguendo os gládios e brandindo as hastas // And raising the swords and branding the spears
No desespero dos iconoclastas // In the desperation of the iconoclasts
Quebrei a imagem dos meus próprios sonhos! // I broke the image of my own dreams

Main source for this post: Masters of Contemporary Brazilian Song MPB 1965 – 1985, by Charles A. Perrone

“Fantasia” and “Catavento e Girassol”

Lyrics from “Fantasia” by Aldir Blanc and João Bosco

Olhando na quarta-feira as ruas vazias// On Wednesday, looking out on the empty streets
Com os garis dando um jeito em nossa moral// With the street-sweepers tidying up our dignity
Custei a compreender que fantasia//It took me a long time to understand that a costume [mask]
É um troço que o cara tira no carnaval//Is something a guy takes off during Carnival
E usa nos outros dias por toda a vida// And wears every other day in his life
Dizendo: “Olá! Como vai?” e coisas assim// Saying, “Hello! How are you?” and things like that
O nó da gravata apertando o pescoço// The knot of the tie choking his neck
Olhando o fundo do poço e rindo de mim//Gazing into the bottom of the barrel and laughing at myself
Ria, rasguei a fantasia, ria// I laughed, I tore up my mask, I laughed
Queimei a garantia, ria// I burned my throat, I laughed
Tô solto por aí// I’m on the loose
Doido, eu danço de Pierrot, triste// Mad, I dance as Pierrot, sad
Morrendo em meu amor, ria// Dying in my love, I laughed
Vendo você morrer de rir// Watching you die laughing

“Catavento e Girassol” by Aldir Blanc and Guinga (1993)

Meu catavento tem dentro // My pinwheel has inside it
o que há do lado de fora do teu girassol // What’s on the outside of your sunflower
Entre o escancaro e o contido // Between the boundless and the restrained
eu te pedi sustenido // I asked you for sharp
e você riu bemol // And you laughed flat
Você só pensa no espaço // You only think of the ether
eu exigi duração // I demanded duration
Eu sou um gato de subúrbio // I’m a cat from the outskirts
você é litorânea // You’re a coastal girl
Quando eu respeito os sinais // While I obey traffic lights
vejo você de patins vindo na contramão // I see you coming on skates, against traffic
mas quando ataco de macho // But when I come on as a tough guy
você se faz de capacho // You play the doormat
e não quer confusão // And don’t want any trouble.
Nenhum dos dois se entrega // Neither of us gives in
Nós não ouvimos conselho // We don’t listen to advice
eu sou você que se vai // I’m the you that’s sucked through
no sumidouro do espelho // The drain in the mirror

Eu sou do Engenho de Dentro // I’m from Engenho de Dentro [neighborhood]
e você vive no vento do Arpoador // And you live in the wind of Arpoador
Eu tenho um jeito arredio // I’m withdrawn by nature
e você é expansiva // And you’re expansive
(o inseto e a flor) // (The insect and the flower)
Um torce pra Mia Farrow // One sides with Mia Farrow
o outro é Woody Allen… // The other with Woody Allen
Quando assovio uma seresta // When I whistle a seresta
você dança, havaiana // You dance the Hawaiian hula

Eu vou de tênis e jeans // I go in sneakers and jeans
encontro você demais // And find you overdressed
scarpin, soirée… // Stilettos, evening gown
Quando o pau quebra na esquina // When we fight on the street corner
você ataca de fina // You put on airs
e me ofende em inglês // And insult me in English
é fuck you, bate-bronha // It’s ‘fuck you, screw off’
e ninguém mete o bedelho // And no one dares interfere
você sou eu que me vou // You’re the me that’s sucked through
no sumidouro do espelho // The drain in the mirror

A paz é feita no motel // We make peace in a motel
de alma lavada e passada // Souls washed and pressed
pra descobrir logo depois // Just to realize right after
que não serviu pra nada // That it was all for naught
Nos dias de carnaval // During Carnival
aumentam os desenganos // The disillusion grows deeper
você vai pra Parati // You go to Parati
e eu pro Cacique de Ramos // And I go to Cacique de Ramos (2x)

Meu catavento tem dentro // My pinwheel has inside it
o vento escancarado do Arpoador // The boundless wind of the Arpoador
Teu girassol tem de fora // Your sunflower has on the outside
o escondido do Engenho de Dentro // what’s hidden from the “Engenho de Dentro” [mill within]
da flor // the flower
Eu sinto muita saudade // I ache with saudade
você é contemporânea // You’re modern
eu penso em tudo quanto faço // I think carefully about everything I do
você é tão espontânea! // You’re so spontaneous!

Sei que um depende do outro // I know each depends on the other
só pra ser diferente // Just to be different
pra se completar // To complete one another
Sei que um se afasta do outro // I know we distance ourselves from one another
no sufoco somente pra se aproximar // During hard times, only to grow closer
Cê tem um jeito verde de ser // You have a green way of being
e eu sou meio vermelho // And I’m more red
mas os dois juntos se vão // But together we go
no sumidouro no espelho // Through the drain in the mirror

Aldir Blanc (L) with João Bosco, 1976.
Aldir Blanc (L) with João Bosco, 1976.
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Aldir Blanc during Carnival at age 9, dressed in Chinese costume.
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Aldir Blanc, Carnival, age 5: dressed as a bullfighter.

Aldir Blanc was born in Estácio neighborhood,  a samba hotbed in Rio de Janeiro named after the city’s founder, Estácio de Sá. In the same neighborhood just about 20 years before Aldir’s birth,  sambistas came up with the name “samba school” for their group, and the rhythm Ismael Silva defined as “bum bum paticumbum prugurundum” (samba that can be marched/danced along with in a Carnival bloco). Blanc grew up in another samba stronghold, on Rua dos Artistas in Vila Isabel – Tijuca, and became not only one of the most renowned lyricists in the history of Brazilian popular music, but also perhaps the city’s favorite cronista (a writer of short newspaper narratives about day-to-day life). His humorous tales portray Rio de Janeiro’s precious peculiarities  through characters he swears were exclusively based upon people he knew growing up– except Penteado, the character who makes the final joke at the end of the crônicas, weaving separate story lines together. One of Rio de Janeiro’s most traditional Carnival blocos took its name from Aldir’s character Esmeraldo Simpatia-é-Quase-Amor. Blanc is most well known for his songs written together with João Bosco, who was studying engineering in Ouro Preto in 1969 when Aldir’s friend Pedro Lourenço Gomes saw him play some of his compositions and suggested he partner with Aldir.

Aldir was surrounded by fragility growing up. He says his birth after 10 months of gestation and 24 hours of labor left his mother, Helena — known in his crônicas as “a formosa Helena” (the beautiful Helena) — with “permanent post-partum depression”: “She had pre-menstrual depression, menstrual depression, and post-menstrual depression. Not many days were left over.” Meanwhile, Aldir’s father, Alceu — called Ceceu Rico in Aldir’s literature — suffered from severe asthma, and Aldir too often found himself holding his father’s hand as they hoped for an ambulance to arrive in time. Likely largely in response to these circumstances, Aldir studied medicine and became a psychiatrist.

But these circumstances growing up also contributed to Aldir’s keen sense of observation and singular sense of humor, and he was always writing and composing. In his early 20s he started out as a percussionist; he cites the influence of bossa nova as an inspiration to learn more about harmony. In 1970 — just around the time he met João Bosco, who would become his inseparable musical partner for over ten years — Aldir Blanc and Sílvio da Silva Junior decided to give a chance to a two-year-old samba they’d written while on vacation in Paquetá, “Amigo é pra essas coisas.” They submitted the song to the Festival Internacional da Canção; it didn’t make the cut for the national phase of that festival, but it made it into the Festival Universitário, and was a sensation with the crowd, becoming Aldir Blanc’s first big hit.

João Bosco, L, and Aldir Blanc, late 1970s.
João Bosco, L, and Aldir Blanc, late 1970s.

In 1971, Elis Regina recorded a beautiful rendition of Aldir’s song “Ela” — composed with César Costa Filho — on her album by the same name. Meanwhile, Aldir was becoming a closer partner of João Bosco, and Elis Regina began to get first dibs on the pair’s songs; she released whichever songs she chose, and later on, in some cases, João Bosco released his rendition. Elis recorded 20 songs by the pair, including some of her (and their) biggest hits, like “Dois pra lá, dois pra cá,” “Mestre-Sala dos Mares,” and “O Bêbado e o Equilibrista.” (More on these songs in upcoming posts.)

Through 1973, Aldir was still a practicing psychiatrist, but in 1974, after the death of his newborn twins, Aldir abandoned medicine; he said if he couldn’t save his first-born children, he no longer wished to try to save anyone. Since then he has dedicated himself fully to writing and composing.

Moacyr Luz and Aldir Blanc discovered they lived in the same building on Rua Garibaldi, in Tijuca, in 1984. This made it very easy for them to compose together!
Moacyr Luz and Aldir Blanc discovered they lived in the same building on Rua Garibaldi, in Tijuca, in 1984; their physical proximity made it very easy for them to compose together.

Around 1980, Aldir and João Bosco had a falling out, though neither likes to comment on the matter. During the 1980s and 1990s, Aldir grew closer to Moacyr Luz, with whom he composed Saudades da Guanabara,  a gorgeous anthem to Rio de Janeiro, together with Paulo César Pinheiro, and the popular anthem to bohemian life, “Pra que pedir perdão?,” with the refrain, “Why ask for your forgiveness if I don’t even forgive myself?” He also began composing with the songwriter and virtuoso guitarist Guinga, with whom he composed the second song in this post, one of the most beautiful from the pair: “Catavento e Girassol.”

Main source for this post: Aldir Blanc: Resposta ao Tempo by Luiz Fernando Vianna, and the documentary Aldir Blanc: Dois pra lá, Dois pra cá.