Caetano Veloso Releases Politically Charged Track For Carnaval 2019

Duet with singer Daniela Mercury lashes against censorship and sexism

Daniela Mercury and Caetano Veloso during the shoot of "Proibido o Carnaval" Celia Santos/Divulgação

Claudio Leal
Salvador

A Carnaval-esque reaction to the current environment of art censorship brought together for the first time in a recording studio Caetano Veloso and Daniela Mercury, in Salvador, Bahia. “Tá proibido o Carnaval/ Nesse país tropical” ("Carnival is forbidden/in this tropical country") is the chorus of "Proibido O Carnaval," composed by Mercury.

The song's theme, Carnaval outlawed in Brazil, came as an inspiration four years ago, but the lyrics were finished after the last year's censorship episodes and protests from ultraconservative groups against art exhibitions in Brazil.

“Abra a porta desse armário/ Que não tem censura pra me segurar/ Abra a porta desse armário/ Que alegria cura/ Venha me beijar” ("Open the closet door/ no censorship will hold me down/Open the closet door/ Because joy heals/ Come here and kiss me") sing the two singer-songwriters, two of Bahia's most popular musical acts. The track, which is three minutes and 53 seconds long, will be released on Friday (25th)

Folha followed three hours of the song's video shoot with Veloso and Mercury at a hotel in downtown Salvador, earlier this week.

The production has 14 dancers and 12 models to integrate singing and dancing, following Mercury's Carnaval performances. 

"Daniela always innovated in Bahia's street Carnaval. She always moves along, creating new things. This new song's spirit is pure Carnaval; its soul connects with the old-school Carnaval anthems, the same kind of satire, but a free satire. It's perfect for Carnaval," said Veloso.  

"Of course, it's a reaction to the current censorship trends. It's an interesting thing. In Carnaval history, anthems always carried social or political commentary. This song follows up on that tradition, and I think it's a great Carnaval song, one that reinforces Daniela political stance," he added.

Translated by NATASHA MADOV

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