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5.3 – is it yours? – with Guinga


00:00 Study 1 and Study 7 – parts of Villa-Lobos


How did this repertoire get to you?


If it’s to talk about erudite guitar,

it was with Jodacil Damasceno, aided by João Pedro Borges,

with whom I had a formal contact in order to try to insert it in my trajectory.

01:12 I wouldn’t do that


and do you think that has influenced you a great deal in the composition aspect?


It has. I wouldn’t do this, for example:

[plays his Nítido e Obscuro to the end] [i]

If it were not for Léo Browuer.

At the time I was shown that and I didn’t know who he was.

Then I liked that rhythmic thing of Browuer [i]

and thought: well I can apply that in my own way to the baião.


01:59 that comes strong from ….

[he plays rhythmic variations with the same harmonic material]


 02:16 Roberto Mendes, Gilberto Gil, João Lira…


02:34 and it has generated you:


I try to ask – through my execution – how Guinga gets to the essence of a composition that intertwines itself with a right-hand “groove”, and that will always accept some natural variation to the rhythm of the gender, in this case, Baião. [i]



and this has led you into this essence

[I play the initial part of the composition in a decelerated manner, vocally stressing the inflection resultant from the compositional choices]




That is very Brazilian.

It is the guitar, which is also a percussive instrument,

trying to imitate an instrument that is only percussive. [i]

Roberto Mendes was once explaining that to me,

saying that chula (music and dance typical of the Recôncavo Baiano) is the main ingredient

for the introduction of “Expresso 2222” of Gilberto Gil.

[he plays it]

03:15 Expresso 2222 taking the listener to a melody typical to the region


[from this memory I play a “ponteado” (kind of guitar playing) based on chula]


Is it yours?


No, it’s any melody.

Not any melody, it’s a melody from that place.

a samba de roda. [i]


It is a traditional “tune” of the samba de roda in Bahia. [i] The vertical point, which leads us to imagine a determined “harmony” for that music, will reveal the use of only two chords, key C and G7. These chords do not represent the essence of this musical discourse based on the game that is established in the horizontal sense between the sung melody and the “ponteado”, which has an accompaniment of rhythmic-melodic content. [i] This discourse gains more significance insofar as it becomes collective through the dance and the “popular” appeal that makes the “spectator” join the performance, which thus transcends the strictly musical sphere. [i]

I interpret, albeit with some risk, that when Guinga questions the authorship of the music I performed, he is in fact asking if I had been composing that kind of music rather than the music he already knew from our previous musical encounters, in which I always felt we reproduced a situation of transmission in the master-disciple format.

The question: “Is it yours?” is herein highlighted so that we can approach another central issue for this study. The question is revealed in the polarity between music of “author” and music that works in the direction of being “lifted to anonymity” – a condition that favors a consequential popular success. [i]



The way you spin these things around is fantastic.


04:15 Guinga’s spin

[straight he plays two pieces of his music inspired in the baião – Coco do coco (Guinga/Aldir Blanc) and Geraldo no leme (Guinga)]

05:43 evocation of the Baião

06:29 on the other hand, there are the Caymmis’ guitars

Another discourse, more contemplative.


Something that comes more from the sea, doesn’t it?


But it is wonderfully rhythmic in its way. [i]


There is this other part of the conversation with Guinga that takes us to the other extreme of the dichotomy between “anonymity” and “authorial”, which pervades the history of western music. The discussion has the starting point in Guinga’s remarks about the relation between “playing” and “composing” in Baden Powell’s creation process.



 00:00 question: the equation between the songwriter and the guitar-player in Baden


00:24 answer: Baden and Turíbio [i]

01:49 it’s something else


In relation to how Baden composes song.

A guy who has a lot of guitar technique …


A monster as a guitar-player…


…and at the time to compose a song …


…is something else.


He doesn’t take the way …


…of the soloist


…the guitar soloist


The guitar is in hand, but the head is that of a popular composer.

It is his feeling, sorrows and joys.

A tremendous samba composer, who tossed baroque into samba,

‘Última forma’ [i] may still be the most “modern” Brazilian samba. […]

 03:07 what do you understand by modernity?

  1. LINK with the same music in – 3.1- the non-song?.

  2. LINK with the idea “ Brouwer’s music has a bond with the traditional Cuban popular music, in which the rhythmic aspect has a leading role” presented in – 5.2 – a question for Browuer – in the statement of Sérgio Assad.

  3. LINK with the idea “decant the ‘essence’ of the musical material and try to make it be written” presented by Sérgio Assad after the answer given by Leo Broweur in – 5.2 – a question for Browuer

  4. LINK with the idea “all the sound apparatus in Cuba is a magnification or transformation of percussion and guitar” presented in 5.1 – “Gagabirô” – in Leo Brouwer’s quotation.

  5. LINK with the example of samba de roda presented in – 5.4 – Brazilian rhythmic – in the statement of Marco Pereira.

  6. LINK with the first of the categories in the schematization presented in – 3 – song: the instrument’s levels of action in the creation process.

  7. LINK with the idea “it is in fact a collective effort that is expressed in the behavior of individuals” presented in the same chapter in Blacking’s quotation.

  8. LINK with the idea “Totonho is the author of several ‘pontos’ that going from the ‘foundation’ are subtly inserted and become ‘different’ traces in the melody” presented in 6.2 – the “Jongo” of Bellinati and the “Jongo of Tamandaré”.

  9. LINK with the idea after which the sub-chapter is named – 6.5 – something poetic inside music with swing – from the statement of Guinga.

  10. Última Forma (Baden Powell/Paulo César Pinheiro) can be listened to at 1m37s in the MPB Especial program, April 13, 1973. Direction: Fernando Faro. By mentioning this song, Guinga values aspects of Baden Powell’s creation process that leads us to the idea of “modern”. LINK with the idea “some used to come with the guitar, others came from the head”, presented in 3.3 – the song without the guitar