Thursday, November 6, 2014

The Soul of Portugal

Fado - The Soul of Portugal
In my search for my Collins family history, I keep running into references to Portugal. Portugal is often referenced as a 'Mediterranean' country, when not one square inch touches the Mediterranean Sea, it's on the Atlantic Ocean.

If you run a Google search: "portuguese", "melungeon", you will find about 17,900 matches. These matches consist of theory, discussion, myth, copy/pastes, and lots of misinformation.

So far, I have found no connection between my family and Portugal, in fact I have no reason to believe they ever claimed 'Portyghee'. The only possible connection could be my first male Collins ancestor could have come from a Portuguese African Colony.

Researching Cultural roots of Mixed Bloods, is both interesting and can be complicated. So I set up a 'home made' system to examine the different ethnicity's / cultures / races.  I call it 'Cultural Footprints' , consisting of language, the table (food), religion and music.

Researching the Portuguese 'cultural musical footprint' in 2006, I came across a Portuguese musical genre called 'Fado'. I can remember finding this video sung by the African born Fadista Marzia on YouTube. It was the first Fado I'd ever heard, it touched my soul, and I have been a Fado fan since that day. In fact, I'm listening to some Fado tunes as I am typing this. I have 21 Fado albums with 350 songs on my iPod. I really did become a fan. I even got to attend a Marzia concert in April of 2009 at the Lensic Theater up in Santa Fe, NM

"Musicologists have a lot of theories (of the origin of Fado) but we don't have a correct theory," Mariza, a well-known Fado singer, said by phone from her Lisbon home. "But I think the most correct one is that it's a mix between (the music of) African slaves and (Portuguese) sailors."

Below are two videos concerning the history of Fado:

In conclusion: I just couldn't tie this cultural footprint into Southern Appalachian culture, somehow Mariza doesn't have the sound of singers Loretta Lynn or Patty Loveless or even Patsy Cline or vice versa. Just different types of music with a different sound, from different cultures.

If any reader would like to listen to / view Fado concerts just click one of these
 Mariza - Terra em concerto (Santarèm 2008)
 Cristina Branco (Une diva du Fado) live
 Mariza-Concerto Completo (London)
 Amalia Rodrigues, Live in New York
Mariza - Concerto em Lisboa

Isso é meus 2 centavos

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