I live in Daman (Damão – a former Portuguese enclave on the western shores of India, which became part of India as recently as 1961) where there’s a strong Portuguese influence in the culture, music in particular. While Daman Day (2nd February), Daman’s biggest folk festival, celebrates and showcases its Indo-Portuguese culture, my blogs and websites help in recording, preserving and even propagating it to a certain extent.
As an award-winning writer of the Writers Bureau (UK) and author of Culture Wise India (Survival Books Ltd, UK), I’m now putting this experience into writing a series of books on the Indo Portuguese culture of Daman and in writing/recording new folk songs to complement the books.
It was a solo performance at Instituto Camões in my ‘Unplugged’ avatar – just me and my Ovation guitar and a digital vocal harmonizer – the others being, ‘Concert’ (Midi guitar OMB) and ‘Grand Concert’ (Arranger keyboard OMB). The songs were covers of contemporary Portuguese songs in the Pop & Romantic genres with a couple of traditional folk songs thrown into the mix as well. That’s about all you’d expect from someone who’s an HR Pro by day, author by night and singer/songwriter on very special evenings, like this one.
I’ll let these photographs (courtesy, Bhupendra Baria) tell the rest of the story…
|Arrival at Camoes…|
|More treble on the vocals, please!
For Guitar, my quick-fix is Bass @ 4 ‘O’ Clock; Treble @ 2 ‘O’ Clock
|The audience couldn’t really know what to expect from a nonfiction author!|
|A few seconds in the dark before the ‘curtain’ went up!|
|The first song… about how good it feels to go back to my roots|
|Threw two trads into the mix – Encosta a tua Cabecinha – arguably, the most popular Portuguese trad in India. One of the first songs my mother taught me as a little boy.
Interestingly, it’s from Brazil!
|Followed by A historia que eu vou contar – I’d need to write a voluminous book to tell the story of a complicated woman. Not that I would succeed though. The songwriter tried to tell it all in just one verse!|
|A change of rhythm and tempo – little snippets of the Pimba that’s played for the wedding march in Daman|
|With H. E., the Ambassador of Portugal, Jorge Roza de Oliveira
I presented him a copy of my book, “Culture Wise INDIA” (Survival Books – UK) and made a commitment that I’d complete writing my second book, “DISCOVER DAMÃO IN DAMAN – The Insider’s Guide to the Indo-Portuguese Culture, Customs & Etiquette of Daman”
The ambassador said he’d be visiting Daman very soon!
|A final caress of appreciation for my Ovation before she goes into her case
I couldn’t decide whether to take the Ovation or the Taylor 714ce Fall Ltd Edition. My friends on Facebook voted overwhelmingly in favor of the Ovation! Isn’t she ‘photogenic’? I strung her with Silk & Steel strings and played her with my fingers to get that clunky sound between a steel-string and a nylon-string guitar
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