#43 – Na cadência do samba (Que bonito é)

Original lyrics:

Que bonito é
Ver um samba no terreiro
Assistir a um batuqueiro
Numa roda improvisar

Que bonito é
A mulata requebrando
Os tambores repicando
Uma escola desfilar

Que bonito é
Pela noite enluarada
Numa trova apaixonada
Um cantor desabafar

Que bonito é
Gafieira salão nobre
Seja rico, seja pobre
Todo mundo a sambar

O samba é romance
O samba é fantasia
O samba é sentimento
O samba é alegria

Bate que vá batendo
A cadência boa que o samba tem
Bate que repicando
Pandeiro vai, tamborim também

Translated lyrics:

Oh what a beauty it is
To see samba on the floor
To watch all the drummers
Improvising together

Oh what a beauty it is
To see the mulaa shaking
The drums in rhythm
A samba school passing by

Oh what a beauty it is
To see a singer open his heart
On a moonlit night
In a love melody

Oh what a beauty it is
The samba in a classy saloon
Be rich, be poor
Everybody together dancing

Samba is romance
Samba is fantasy
Samba is feeling
Samba is joy

Beat on keep on beating
In this rhythm only samba has
Beat on keep on beating
Tambourine too, tambourine on

I don’t want to make this blog as a kind of memorial, but as everybody knows, Brazil is hosting the 2014 World Cup and I thought it would be a great occasion to restart things here. The university term is ending and I don’t have much time to keep attention on the blog, but everything’s being so great during the World Cup (when everybody thought it would be a disaster) that there would be no reason not trying to share some of the joy around it with those that read this blog.

So, what about this song? What does it has to with football/soccer?

Nothing…and everything. “Na Cadência do Samba” is a song composed by Luís Bandeira in the 1950s (actually, I don’t know if the lyrics were composed by him or only the melody) and which became synonym with football in Brazil because it was, in its instrumental version, as you can see above, the theme-song to “Canal 100”, one of the most memorable movie initiatives in Brazilian history.

Canal 100 was the brainchild of journalist Carlos Niemeyer and Jean Manzon, who between 1958 and 1986 produced hundreds of hours of movie-reels recording what went on Brazilian stadium, specially on Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. Those short films, like the news shows of today, used to play before the sessions started in cinema. Canal 100 helped to establish the visual memory of Brazilian football, showing through the country what mythic players like Pelé, Garrincha, Nilton Santon, later Zico and his teammates and all that came between did on the field.

What distinguished Canal 100 from other TV efforts to capture football, however, was that the camera stood usually at the level of the players, and not above it, as the almost bird’s eye view we have today. So when you see a Canal 100 reel you feel as if you were inside the game, feeling whatever the players and the public is feeling.

Below you can see a snippet of this history with this complete reel of Palmeiras beating Santos (and Pelé!) by 2 x 1 at the state championship of São Paulo in 1969.

And if you’re interested in more Canal 100, you can see this site (unfortunately only in Portuguese).