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28 May 2017

Aratanha Azul “Aratanha Azul” 1979 Brazil Psych Folk Rock





Aratanha Azul “Aratanha Azul” 1979 Brazil Psych Folk Rock

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pHLGmLPOajE

Aratanha Azul was a group formed in 1973 by students of the UFPE Application College in Recife. Fans of the bands that were stirring up the Pernambucan counter-culture like Ave Sangria, and of foreign bands like Yes and Rolling Stones, started shaking up several high school festivals of the time and became an important udigrudi band. They recorded only one compact with four songs pressed by Rozenblit released in 1979, one year after the end of the band......
Blue Aratanha appeared in 1973 as a kind of college band. Thales Silveira (bass player) and João Maurício (guitarist) studied together at the Application College and were fans of rock'n'roll. Zaldo Rocha Filho (keyboard player) met both of them, eyeing their collections of albums: Thales, The Beatles, and John, the Rolling Stones. From there, to join and form a band was a consequence no more than 'supernatural' - just to remind Carlos Santana.

They were all very young at the time. The oldest, Joao Maurício, was 18 years old, followed by Zaldo, 17, and Thales, 14. The battery was initially taken over by colleague Flávio Menezes, 15. But not for long.

With the departure of Flávio, and already with the proposal to take the project seriously, the initial trio sought another drummer. Paulo Daniel, Zaldo's only 12-year-old cousin, was "beating me up," as the keyboardist recalls. They did some tests and decided to incorporate it to Aratanha..................

Aratanha Azul  appeared in 1973 as a kind of college band. Thales Silveira (bass player) and João Maurício (guitarist) studied together at the Application College and were fans of rock'n'roll. Zaldo Rocha Filho (keyboard player) met both of them, eyeing their collections of albums: Thales, The Beatles, and John, the Rolling Stones. From there, to join and form a band was a consequence no more than 'supernatural' - just to remind Carlos Santana.

They were all very young at the time. The oldest, Joao Maurício, was 18 years old, followed by Zaldo, 17, and Thales, 14. The battery was initially taken over by colleague Flávio Menezes, 15. But not for long.

With the departure of Flávio, and already with the proposal to take the project seriously, the initial trio sought another drummer. Paulo Daniel, Zaldo's only 12-year-old cousin, was "beating me up," as the keyboardist recalls. They did some tests and decided to incorporate it to Aratanha.
This formation was responsible for the group's four-year career, and for its resurgence, now in 2000. "Paulo was so small that the battery covered him, along with his hair," says his cousin.

The group's official debut was in October 1974, during the Art Week of Padre Abranches College. Although the shadow of the dictatorship was always present, it was a special period for what could be called the genesis of Pernambuco pop music. Laílson and Lula Côrtes had launched the Satwa, a year before; And the group Ave Sangria the same name LP in the same year. "We were fans of the Sangria Bird," says Thales.

Several performances followed by the capital of Pernambuco and, later, by other cities of the Northeast. Zaldo recalls that before presenting himself, Aratanha rehearsed for at least three months. "Every show had to have something new, because we played a lot in Recife," Thales explains.

The songs shown by various schools (São Bento, Olinda, São Luís, Recife, when the sports court was inaugurated) and theaters (from the Park, Valdemar de Oliveira), formed a repertoire with more than 50 compositions. Of these, only three have a phonographic record - the compact double Aratanha Azul, pressed by Rozenblit in 1979, which also features a re-reading of Ernesto Nazareth's choro Escorregando.

"The songs were over-censored, especially those related to sex, religion and drugs," recalls Zaldo. "In one of them, I just spoke the word 'God' and they (the censors) did not find it appropriate to the context."

Zaldo Rocha, who in addition to playing the piano and organ also sang, proved to be the main composer of Aratanha Azul. At the time of the group's formation, he had recently arrived from the United States - where he had spent a year of exchange - and was strongly influenced by what he had heard outside (Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Beatles and Stones). "I had stopped and started playing the piano again. Curtia was very Rick Wakeman and Yes too. Yes was the band. But I enjoyed Chopin's piano very much, "he says.
The band that most influenced Aratanha, however was the Rolling Stones. Not only in the musical aspect, but also in respect to the performance and scenarios on the stage. In some shows, Thales and João started with a guitar duo. The Theater of the Park was the preferred place, "the house of Aratanha", as defined by Zaldo. "It was the best shows," he recalls.

In addition to the band's musicians there was a 'galley' of friends who helped in the production, making light, scenery and spreading posters across the city with a bucket of glue. "In the last year (1978), we did a tour to Salvador (through Maceió), with these friends, without paying anything," says Zaldo.

The keyboardist recalls that two components of the support team traveled in a van with all the paraphernalia, while the musicians followed by regular bus. "Since I was a Conservatory student, I liked playing piano more (a 'cabinet' model). We rode the whole Recife with him in the van. Once, we climbed Pelourinho (in Bahia) with a piano of (half) tail ".

Such production resulted, according to Zaldo, João Maurício and Thales - who now live in Recife - in great return by the public. "In 1976, on the band's birthday," says the bassist, "we put in the park more people than (Raimundo) Fagner, who introduced himself a week or two later."

The following year they would play the first edition of the Let's Embrace the Sun festival, alongside Dead Dogs and Cactus Flower. In 1978, they would record the only record of their career, and would have ended the trajectory of the Blue Aratanha.

The (Near) End - In January 1979, when the label Rozenblit had placed the double compact of Aratanha in the market, the group no longer existed. Zaldo decided to go to study Music at the University of Campinas, where he would remain to attend a Masters and PhD in Linguistics; João Mauricio, who graduated from the Recife Law Faculty, went to the São Paulo capital where he would take a Masters and PhD from the University of São Paulo; And Paulo Daniel, shortly afterwards, went to Rio de Janeiro, where he still lives today, to work as a musician.

Thales will continue in Recife, teaching classes at the Conservatory. Music, however, remained the main link between friends. In the '80s, João played with Zaldo in some festivals, including Frevos from compatriot Nelson Ferreira.

And it was with the return of Zaldo to Recife in 1997 - João had already returned to teach at the Law School - that they began to mature the idea of ​​reactivating the quartet. At least to record on CD the repertoire of Aratanha and (who knows?) Do a launching show. "It was to commemorate the 25 years of the band," says Zaldo. Paulo Daniel will come exclusively from Rio de Janeiro for this feat. The troupe enters the studio in January 2001...............

01. A História de Vicente Silva
02. Escorregando
03. Tema
04. Como os Aviões


johnkatsmc5, welcome music..