ANTÔNIO VIEIRA (São Luis / MA, May 9, 1920 - April 7, 2009)

            A poor boy raised by a wealthy family, he was baptized with the name of the Portuguese writer and politician Padre Antonio Vieira, a missionary in Brazilian lands. In addition to his studies, he lived his childhood fascinated by the effervescent movement of the Central Market of São Luis, and the pregões sung by his street vendors. Graduated in Accounting Sciences, he worked in various activities, from Army sergeant, mechanic from automobile to merchant, having composed the first song Mulata Bonita (... I want my mulatto / who in São Luís I left / do not go back to her / Of sadness I will die), still in the thirties.

In 1943, he participated in a vocal quintet (Anjos do Samba), that worked in Radio Timbira (first emitter of Maranhão), when it learned to play afoxé with mastery. In the 50's, he directed the program Telecine, working on television just opened. In the mid 70's, he started to use the guitar to better compose, and he recorded his songs (more than three hundred) in the studio of a record company, offered to him by the owner, his companion and president of the Order of Musicians of Brazil / Maranhão . At that time, he also served as administrative director of the General Hospital of Maranhão. In 1983, he was in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, accompanying as percussionist the singer and composer Chico Maranhão in his show Slave of the Heart, by the project Six and Half.

In 1988, the LP Pregões de São Luís was released, starting with a book of the same name (Fundação Cultural do Maranhão, 1980), a partnership with the composer Lopes Bogéa, about the songs sung in the streets, announcing the sale of products. In 1997, Maranhão Rita Ribeiro recorded the samba Cocada (... and put in a pot to make cocada / there invited mulatas and blondes / brunettes and black to give a taste ...), nominated to the Sharp Award for Best Song, the following year, which aroused attentions of the phonographic market for his work. The first CD Samba É Bom (Sony Music, 2001), recorded live at the Teatro Arthur Azevedo, revealed all his talent to a vibrant audience, infected by pieces such as the already mentioned Cocada, envolving boleros Ciúme (partnership of Chaminé) And For Remembering, with the participation of Célia Maria and Rita Ribeiro, respectively, the poetic song Maçarico (... tortoise bird / from the beaches of Ribamar / go flying and warning / for my good that I will return), with Sivuca at the piano , The maxixe Has Quem Queira (friend if you are sad / goes to a joke / if you do not want / have anyone want ...) high point of the show again with Rita Ribeiro, special participation of Elza Soares (Na Cabecinha de Dora, Cachaça He picked up - partnerships with Pedro Giusti and Lopes Bogéa, respectively) and in the end the samba Boy Travesso (coautoria of Pedro Giusti) in duo with Zeca Baleiro, the director of the show.

Also in 2001, the CD Antoniologia Vieira, independent production of the musician and professor of mathematics Adelino Valente, with 16 compositions interpreted by young singers from Maranhão, some lesser known as Dry Northeast, Ugly Duckling, Vou Pro Mar, É Saudade, Por Ti, Nobody Will Know. The following year, she released the album Compositor Popular (Seal Eldorado), pure poetry singing memories, homesickness, popular traditions, children's games, and striking figures from other times as the candy seller. These sweet / for now I need / after life has become so bitter for me), the grinder, the charcoal, and the great success Smelling Bath (... you must take a fragrant bath / to end this morphine / And the body is clever).

In 2004, he presented himself at the Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil / RJ for the project "Brazil de Todos os Sambas", accompanied by the countrymen Rita Ribeiro and César Teixeira, as well as the female singer Teresa Cristina. In that same year, Companhia Vale do Rio Doce (in partnership with the Music and Art Support Association of Maranhão - AMARTE) sponsored a box of only 70 non-commercial copies distributed in libraries and public entities, including video, two books - one of lyrics and another biographical - and 18 CDs, representing all his work by him sung to the guitar.

With his passing, the records of his expressive work are eternal, accentuated by regional rhythms and dances (such as the Creole drum, deck, cucuriá, carimbó), poetry found in the common man, love and suffering, popular sayings, Besides its importance in the formation of the culture of the chorinho for its State.

© Copyright 2008 - Pelo Telefone: A trip through Popular Brazilian Music.

Development and Design: Marcio Cunha