These days, can you separate Brazilian music from Brazilian football?
Sometimes the link is obvious – songs like A ginga do mané and Um a zero.
Or the link is made later on, perhaps by virtue of a song being part of a ubiquitous advertising campaign. Yes, I’m looking at you, Mas que nada.
A ginga do mané was inspired by Brazilian footballer Garrincha, who started life being known as Manuel Francisco dos Santos. With bent legs, a spinal defect and one leg that was shorter than the other, he became known as one of the best dribblers in world football. He played 50 games for Brazil, but his personal life was riddled with tragedy. He was a prodigious drinker and equally prodigious sire, with at least 14 offspring according to some sources. He died of cirrhosis of the liver aged 49.
Um a zero was composed to celebrate Brazil’s 1-0 win over Uruguay in the final of the 1919 South American Championship (now known as the Copa América) – Brazil’s first-ever international title.
New Brazilian music group Sexteto Zona Sul made its debut on a sultry Melbourne evening before a sell-out crowd, scoring an encore.