Brazil, 1969. After the infamous AI-5 (institutional act #5), the dictatorship that was ruling entered in a new phase, seeing its 5th birthday, with an urban guerrilla and a mass wave of protests throughout the country. The most reactionary group made a coup inside the coup. From that moment the previous censorship was installed on every layer of the society, no civil guaranties at all, any manifestation was a subversive act, elections/congress suspended, as the unions and student leadership.
The terror against anyone contrary to the order was real. Many people were persecuted, arrested, tortured, killed and buried as indigents under the iron tutelage of the State, and the connivance from big entrepreneurs, media groups, multinational companies, industrial bourgeoisie and CIA (Torture expertise). (!)
The only thing that this tropical, multicultural and joyful society could vote and participate, was the emblematic Festivais (music festivals), liberated by the junta. Created in 1965, aired and transmitted live by multiple broadcasters, always held by the end of the year, it was the greatest musical event from the time; eagerly awaited, with mass media coverage, the crowds could boo and cheered to death in a collective catharsis, revealing new national superstars or villains!
Renowned artist like Elis Regina, Geraldo Vandré, Edu Lobo, Nara Leão, Chico Buarque, Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil, Gal Costa, Tom Zé, and many others was revealed there. However, due to the turbulent development in 1968 festival, the dictatorship decided to prune and systematize the spectacle. There was a strict preoccupation to show an ordained happily country to the world, the festival would be transmitted on early January to Europe, via Rede Globo (sic), in a 3-hour special.
At the end of the year, most mentioned artists were exiled by solidarity or not, Tropicalism was dead, Marighella too; inside this turbulent musical void, Os Novos Bahianos (first graphed with H, after without) emerged and caused a fuss.
Let’s go to their history:
It all started at Vila Velha theater (Salvador, Bahia) with the show ‘O Desembarque dos Bichos Depois do Dilúvio Universal’. The members: Luiz Dias Galvão, agronomist, poet, musician, cinema and dramatics enthusiast, 32 years; Antônio Carlos de Morais Pires, 21 years of fiery musical essay at Turiassu, interior of Bahia; Paulo Roberto de Figueiredo, ex-crooner from Orquestra Avanço, 23 years, nicknamed Paulinho Boca de Cantor; Bernadete Dinorah de Carvalho (Baby), from Niterói (Rio de Janeiro), newcomer to Salvador, which commemorate his seventeen years living under the bridge (!); lastly, Jorginho, Carlinhos, Lico e Pedro Anibal de Oliveira Gomes (Pepeu) that formed the backing band, Os Leif’s. With the exception of Bernadette, they were all from Bahia, unheard, strange, radicals and young.
It was the beginning of Novos Baianos, at the tropical chaos of 1969.
Baby, carioca problem-girl, dreamed, like many in its age, being an artist, a singer, the one who deserves posters with your initials. Her baptism name didn’t help too. In an impetus of boredom and freedom, she goes with her friend, Ediane, to Salvador, there she meets Galvão and Moraes at Brasa’s, a unique bar from there. Paulinho (boca de cantor) also met the triad and joins them at Dona Maritó boarding house. The only one with previous musical experience (live shows and recording), were Pepeu (guitar), owner of an unmistakable style, genuinely Brazilian, crossing Hendrix with Choro. (!!)
In the beginning, only a quartet: Moraes, Galvão, Paulinho e Baby (whose new name was born and celebrated from a movie character) which was accompanied by Leif’s. Galvão was the poet and mentor, Moraes the main composer, Galvão’s partner, with a subtle acoustic guitar. Paulinho was the rascal, Lúcifer, and mellow singer. Pepeu the guitar hero. Baby the stoned singer. All, with a Tropicalia pinch in 1969/70.
After the racket from Dilúvio in Salvador, they went to São Paulo, were performed in numerous TV shows always exceeding the expected number of songs and staging absurd expedients. The first manager was Marcos Lázaro, through João Araújo (manager of Gil, Caetano, Gal) they signed with RGE and release their first single:
Yet in 1969: De Vera /// Colégio de Aplicação.
Then in 1970, a caustic, sardonic, threatening Lp (Ferro Na Boneca – RGE) which included tracks from the compact, a cornucopia of styles/titles. They also participate as actors and on the soundtrack from two Underground (Marginal) films of the era: Meteorango Kid e Caveira My Friend. Still, they released a double compact without Baby, who was trying her first steps on a solo foray.
These early albums will have dedicated posts in the near future!
Let’s go to our record:
Today’s album is an incredible double compact, never re-released on Cd, forgotten and hated by the band due to technical aspects. It was the one and only attempt on Phillips, at the time directed by the mighty Nelson Motta. One thing that must be said, was the radical transformation that the band went through after meeting with João Gilberto, he also lived with them for a short period at the infamous apartment in Botafogo. The roots, that were until then based in various styles, such as, rock, baião, soul, tango, turned into samba and choro strictly.
This little revolution happened in late 1971, and it’s well counted in the documentary Filhos de João. So this is their last release without the sound that would be recognized and praised not only in Brazil but worldwide!
We go from hippy folk to a Latin brass experience (even sung in Spanish!), passing through some sambas and harsh fuzz rocks sang in an over the top registry by Baby! Special mention lyrics go for Dê um Rolê, a counterculture hymn, that became very (very!) famous on the interpretation of Gal Costa, the song preaches love from head to toe, going completely against the terror that was represented by the military.
Please enjoy this little gem and Jó Utat!
Novos Bahianos + Baby Consuelo – No Final do Juízo (1971)
A1 Dê Um Rolê (Moraes Moreira / Galvão) ~ Paulinho Boca de Cantor
A2 Você Me Dá Um Disco? (Moraes Moreira / Pepeu Gomes / Galvão) ~ Baby do Brasil
B1 Caminho de Pedro (Moraes Moreira / Galvão) ~ Moraes Moreira
B2 Risque (Moraes Moreira / Galvão) ~ Moraes Moreira e Baby do Brasil
Production Director: Nelson Motta
Photo: David Drew Zingg
Compacto Duplo – Philips 6245 003