Tag: Desgarrada

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Dueling singers respond to each other with improvised verses, often witty or biting. A living tradition in the north of Portugal. The singers are usually accompanied, or accompany themselves, with concertinas or accordions. They take it in turn to deliver their words, with the accordions filling in the gaps.

Desgarrada - lyrical dueling rap of northern Portugal

Augusto Canário & Naty Vieira "As Cuecas da Naty e do Canário"

1. Augusto Canário & Naty Vieira "As Cuecas da Naty e do Canário" (Naty and Canário's underwear)

Hypnotic weird folk music from the farming areas in the far North of Portugal. Two voices - often male and female, improvise insults, boasts and observational comedy. They are accompanied by accordions - one, two or sometimes a massed accordion band, as here.

The same tune repeats endlessly, and provides a background to the words, which follow a tight poetic structure. Very funny if you are Portuguese, but hard to translate as it is full of double entendres (duplos sentidos in Portuguese), slang and shared cultural references.

Note the 3.7 million views. This style is popular in Portugal, and is performed especially at country fairs and festivals. The Minho river valley is the heartland of Desgarrada today, but it is found throughout the North and in Madeira.

It is also performed around the world in ex-patriate, emigrant Portuguese associations and clubs, perhaps as a reminder of home. The accordion backing means it doesn't depend on amplification, so it can be performed indoors or outside.

Mike da Gaita and Naty Vieira "Desgarrada com Naty"

2. Mike da Gaita and Naty Vieira "Desgarrada com Naty" (Song duel with Naty)

Live Desgarrada can go on for a considerable time, as the singers vie with each other and think of new things to say. The recorded version is usually truncated in comparision.

The metrical structure of Desgarrada helps the singers improvise. Each singer sticks throughout to their own pattern, which can

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