Portugal, a country roughly the size of Indiana, has had an understandably modest contribution to world culutre. But, it has given us fado: a bluesy style of music from Lisbon characterized by mournful tunes and lyrics and infused with a sense of resignation, fatefulness and melancholia. The essence of fado - a close cousin to Spanish Flamenco - is captured by the word saudade, which roughly translates as "longing".
Fado isn't heard much stateside, but the CUNY Graduate Center's indispensible world music series Live@365 brought the extraordinary 28-year-old singer Ricardo Ribeiro to Elebash Recital Hall last night. Ribeiro, who was accompanied last night by the excellent guitarist Pedro Joia, exhibited passion and emotion well beyond his years, without any pop sweetening or exotic embellishments. Truly a wonder to behold, even if the words were lost on most in the audience.
More pics on the photo page.