I am getting weary of the sad reality of writing this blog as more and more of the legends of samba are passing on. Today "Aunt" Doca, the legendary matriarch of Madureira, pastora of the Velha Guarda da Portela, hostess of one of the best and longest running pagodes in town, passed away at 76. The great samba school Portela will cry for a long time to come.
I am almost speechless in writing this post...
When I arrived in Rio in August 2007 to spend a year doing my research, one of the first places I wanted to experience was the pagode in the backyard of Tia Doca's place in Madureira. However, it was not until November of 2007 that I finally did. I called a number to get information about the feijoada event that they were having with special guest Dudu Nobre. A very sweet lady answered the phone, giving me easy directions on how to make it all the way out to Madureira. She continued to talk casually about the place and how this particular pagode has been happening since 1975. After a few moments on the phone I realized that I was talking to Tia Doca herself! I arrived later that afternoon and immediately went to see her. She was incredibly warm and welcoming, as was her son Nem. I instantly felt like I was at home.
Needless to say the feijoada, prepared by her daughter and some assistants, was one of the best meals I had during my time in Rio. The pagode was also one of the best. I have written extensively about the Pagode da Tia Doca in posts past. Please click on the various links here, or use the navigation on the right to see videos and music.
I will leave you with a poignantly appropriate song, written by Arlindo Cruz, Sombrinha and Luiz Carlos da Vila (also recently passed in October 2008). The song "The Show Must Go On" was recorded live at the pagode in Tia Doca's own backyard.
"O show tem que continuar"
from the live album Pagode da Tia Doca 2000.
Salve o pagode da Tia Doca, salve a Velha Guarda da Portela, e salve Madureira...
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Posted by beto dotô at 1:40 PM