Advent Song for December 10: Boas Festas

One of the nicest things about eleven years of advent music has been discovering songs I’d never heard before and growing to love them just as much as I do the trusted and reliable classics. Boas Festas is a Brazilian song from 1933 which I found the year of Christmas Songs From Around The World and which is now firmly on my Christmas rotation because it’s so jaunty. In my sample of two this morning, nobody failed to start dancing to it when I played it.

It’s only fitting, then, that today’s not of good news should also come from Brazil, where there hasn’t been much good news recently, but this plan by Brazilian state leaders to partner with France to save sections of the Amazon rainforest is, at least, a sign of something hopeful. Perhaps this is the week that Bolsonaro, Trump and Johnson are all toppled. Let’s at least allow ourselves to entertain the delicious possibility, shan’t we?

Advent song for December 2: Boas Festas, Brazil

You might not have heard of Carlos Galhardo, but in his day his lively radio hits made him a star in his home country of Brazil. Boas Festas was composed by his friend Assis Valente and first recorded in 1933, when Galhardo was just twenty. It took me a long time to find a Christmas song from South America that wasn’t Spanish or Portuguese in origin, but since Galhardo and Valente were both born in Brazil and lived there all their lives I think Boas Festas counts as authentically Brazilian.

I haven’t been able to find a convincing translation for the whole song, but I am fairly confident that the title translates as “Happy Holidays”. If you are good at Portuguese <COUGH Sam>, please feel free to send me a translation or stick it in the comments below. Otherwise, just enjoy the music.