Monday, June 22, 2009

Rediscovery : Madredeus

As I came home from the Pink Martini concert on Friday night, I was thinking how wonderful it is to go into a concert without expectations as to what the music is like and to be pleasantly surprised.
The last time this happened to me in a big way was in 1996 and seeing the Portuguese group "Madredeus". I had been to Portugal a couple of years before and after reading a glowing review of their latest recording "O Spiritu do Paz" noticed they were also coming to town to perform at Roy Thomson Hall in fact. Now, understand I have only a few words of Portuguese to my credit - mostly having to do with food so to go to a concert pretty much entirely in Portuguese...well, an adventure - since most of the audience was speaking the language!
How to describe how mesmerizing this group is? It's absolutely hypnotizing - traditional folk music but going beyond. When I listen to the recording which was in pretty steady rotation and I am now listening to, I am transported. I visualize sitting in a seaside cafe in Sagres in the Algarve as the sun sets and watching fishing boats come in, touching the mighty cork trees in the Alentejo, surveying the landscape from the remains of Moorish castles, being gently kissed by misty rain as we drive along the winding roads of the Minho and Douro. I remember the kindess of the people, batatas fritas with everything, oranges and grapes at farmer's markets, delicious pastries, vinho verde...
Check out this haunting music - videos are even available on You Tube. Unfortunately some of the original members including Teresa Salgueiro, their singer have left.
Obrigado, Madredeus.
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