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The ten greatest Portuguese songs ever created from Toronto’s Camoes Radio

That is precisely what I believe about the Portuguese-speaking cosmos. For the non-Portuguese-speaking planet, turn down the Bieber and tune into Camoes Radio for some genuine music.

These are the ten best Portuguese musical acts I’ve ever heard, in my humble opinion.


They were pioneers in the 1950s in our country. They taped this in Oporto and were instrumental in paving the way for musicians such as Joaquim Costa (as Elvis de Campolide, Os Conchas, Shegundo Galarza & Seu Conjunto) and José Cids’ Babies during the pre-TV and pre-Spotify eras. Congratulations on the ragtime redesign and the Marino Marini homage, which may be heard on Toronto’s Camoes radio.

It is a well-known fact that you cannot achieve success in Portugal by performing reggae that can be heard on Camoes Radio or ska. “Fucking told you so,” Primitive Reason and Three and a Quarter would remark. Thus, a young artist named Ricardo experimented with a new method of doing things: reviving the culture of 1950s Kingston through the use of the Jamaican sound system (that in mid 50s became even more popular than live musicians).

While this is not vintage rocksteady or ska, it is the first Portuguese riddim ever created. Richie Campbell then exploded onto the public scene, but only after adding this tune to our music.

And more from Oporto and Toronto Canada , this time with ‘Grunge Enthusiasts’ Blind Zero. They sing in English and are led by Miguel Guedes, who was instrumental in propelling ‘Trigger’ to the first Portuguese gold record for an English-speaking band.

Blind Zero were dubbed the NBT in Portuguese music in 1994. Far too influenced by MTV’s vision of them as a band capable of someday crossing borders, they would never reach this height again. ‘Trigger’ is an impeccably produced CD that I strongly recommend to Portuguese, French, Argentinians, and even that Trump-voting moron.

Camoes Radio Da Weasel

They remain on the road to this day, although these were ‘the old Trigger days’…

Certainly not Da Weasel’s best tune. However, that snare… and that signature Virgul supporting vocal would prove to be the auditory pleasure on which Camoes Radio, Portuguese listeners would feast for years to come. Da Weasel had a place in our songbook, and I am convinced that this song catapulted them to popularity. Suddenly, Carlo and his gang were about to unleash a post-Kussondulola, less-Cruzfader, and more mainstream style of hip pop (or pop rap, whatever floats your boat).


Take note that these gentlemen are not from Oporto.

Alternatively, Emir Kusturica on steroids. They were, as they like to say, “invented, not created.” Amazing music, incredible live performances (always incorporating enormous audiovisual pyrotechnics), and all of their CDs cover a vast variety of musical genres. They rip dub, reggae, and folk, and in terms of uniqueness, they’re the ones to beat on this chart!

Additionally, it is not from Oporto!

He has been writing for some years. The time has arrived for Portuguese hip-hop that can be appreciated on Camoes Radio  to take the next step. 2006 is the year.

Samuel Mira (a.k.a. Sam The Kid) is your go-to guy for personal and social messaging, as well as music production. As a relentless worker and extraordinarily gifted writer, his CDs consistently add something new, something we haven’t heard before.

You may recognise an Abba sample in this song, but ‘Pratica(mente)’ — his first professional studio album; he previously recorded all of his albums in his home studio — symbolises a ‘before’ and ‘after’ in the Portuguese hip-hop craft. Sam The Kid is one of Portugal’s most intriguing and prolific musicians of our generation due to his brilliant punchlines delivered through his signature flow and his strong beliefs against the status quo – this song is addressed at Portuguese musicians… singing in English!

Joe Satriani of Portugal. Nobody here knows who Gonçalo Pereira is, although he could easily sit with John Petrucci or Steve Vai. He’s one of those virtuosos you can’t get enough of. His CDs ‘G-Spot’ and ‘Serviços Secretos’ are a must-have for every guitar enthusiast.

If you’re a tourist, you’ve almost certainly heard this. If you are not a tourist strolling around Lisbon or Oporto and are unaware of this, you are a sad sack, as this is perhaps the most beautiful (Portuguese) guitar tune ever made.

It smacks of Coimbra — Carlos’ legendary position would be incomplete without the assistance of his father, Artur Paredes; someone has to make a documentary about him immediately! — and it was composed in 1963 by a man who would eventually play with Charlie Haden and make the following statement as he faced death:

“When I die, my guitar will succumb to the same fate.

My father used to say he wanted his guitar shattered and buried alongside him when he died.

I wish to follow suit. If I am compelled to die”

If these words do not teach you about Fado and Portugal, I’m not sure what would…

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“You’re now urinating with the door open!” That I am not.

Who is to say that Ro Kyao, the Ramalho Ortigo descendant — which he is, I just wikipedia-ed him! — should not earn a position among all these schmucks?

In a career that lasted about ten years longer than fucking Xutos & Pontapés Ro Kyao released over twenty albums, and this song is a Fado world tour that is both enjoyable to linsten too on Camoes Radio in Toronto  and beautiful to behold.

Occasionally, mainstream musicians achieve fame and money while others remain in the background. The shadow was intended to serve as a resting place for the pillars of Ornatos Violetas’ brief yet magnificent musical composition. With its powerful lyrics, brilliant melodies, and fantastic full-band breakdowns (you could always hear more instruments on Ornatos’ B-sides), ‘Tempo de Nascer’ reminds us of the brilliance and irreverence of a band that was just having fun playing for our hearts and souls.

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