From Fado to Rock, it's a musical country

The fado, considered UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage since 2011, was born in the streets of Lisbon and it was vulgar music from the bohemian environments, played in the typical neighbourhoods and sung by men and women of the people.

Severa is regarded as the first fadista (fado singer) to be recalled, but fado as it is known today gained its recognition with Amália Rodrigues in the mid 20th century.

Today the fado, of Arab influence, is a national musical style, conveys the Portuguese soul where destiny, love and saudade (a longing sentiment) are constant. Ana Moura, Mariza and Carminho are some names of the new generation of fadistas who brought grit and modernity to fado.

Melancholy is an usual characteristic not only of fado, but of the cante alentejano, songs that the farmworkers of the southern Portugal sung when going to work in the fields.

Mainly sung by men choirs, it is still possible to hear them in the taverns of the Alentejo villages, started spontaneously by the men who gather at the end of the day to talk and have a drink.

Portugal also has folklore, such as the Algarve corridinho, the Minho vira, the Ribatejo fandango, the Madeira bailinho and the Azores sapateia. In Trás-os-Montes the displays of the Miranda pauliteiros are worthy to be seen.

In the end of the last century, rock music experienced a resurgence and new bands such as Xutos e Pontapés, GNR and Rui Veloso emerged, and are still making music nowadays. There are other bands, like Clã and The Gift, that make them company today.


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