20 August 2011

Good news from Os Ferreiras

I am still a bit behind due to work commitments, but I heard some good news for those of you lucky enough to be visiting Lisbon "soon". The restaurante "Os Ferreiras", now run by César Ferreira, following in the footsteps of his late father António, has the following "elenco" (roster of singers and musicians).

Artur Batalha (video 1, 2)
Júlia Lopes (video 1)
Pedro Galveias (videos 
1, 2, 3)
Cátia Santos (video 1)

Guit. Port.: Ângelo Freire (video 1)
Viola de Fado: Américo Leite

This is really a tremendous lineup, not to be missed. Batalha is in excellent form (I heard him just a month of so ago), Júlia Lopes and Cátia Santos are stalwarts of the restaurant, and now they have Pedro Galveias, who has a real presence live. I should also mention that it is not unusual to have others stop by to sing. Here is a late-night session with the great Jorge Fernando. One night we were there and both Mariza and Carminho walked in...

The musicians are also excellent. Ângelo Freire is still Mariza's regular guitarist (so far as I know), and perhaps he is on this gig while she spends time with her new baby...so who knows how long it will last. Américo Leite is an excellent foil for him.

Thanks to César for providing this information. You can check out photos, find their address, phone etc. on their Facebook page

Note that every fado house will tell you that you "need" a reservation, but here it is actually true. The fado happens Friday and Saturday evenings only. 

Videos of some of my visits there a couple of years ago... (1, 2, 3, 4)

A tough week for the fado, but it continues

Within the last week, two very important people in the fado died. The first was José Manuel Osório, whose work I have mentioned various times on this blog. The second was José Fontes Rocha, who worked for twelve years as one of Amália Rodrigues' guitarists. He was responsible for the music on 'Com Que Voz', a landmark album in the modern fado.

A very young José Manuel Osório
Osório much later inlife
Here is Osório's obituary (in Portuguese, from Público).
A fado from Osório, and another (both ultra-rare, thanks to YouTube user anm1951).
And one of Osório live.
He lived HIV+ for 27 years.

Early career

Here is Rocha's obituary (in Portuguese, from Público). What, they couldn't find a picture?

Another appreciation by Vítor Marceneiro (in Portuguese). Even the president of the country felt compelled to talk about his contribution to society (official English translation).

The gold standard: the Conjunto de guitarras de Raul Nery: Raul Nery (gp), Fontes Rocha (gp), Júlio Gomes (v), Joel Pina (vb), with Amália Rodrigues singing "Naufrágio" from the album 'Com Que Voz'.

Here is a guitarrada from the old days with two other greats, José Pracana and José Carlos da Maia.

Fontes Rocha later in life
He worked right up until the very end, regularly at Casa de Fado in Lisbon. Here is an homage from the great YouTube fado documentarian, casadofado, taken at that house.