Flavia Coelho: DNA

Lost and Found

Listening Post 258. Joyce’s Ulysses, Allende’s The House of the Spirits, Hugo’s Les Misérables—often a nation’s most critical and loving assessments come from its children abroad. Add to this roster DNA, the fourth album that Brazilian singer-songwriter Flavia Coelho has sent home from Paris, 12 tracks that convey the artist’s irrepressible spirit and the insight of a penetrating novel. Like her own DNA, Coelho’s style palette for the album is a glorious mix—Brazilian and Caribbean sounds, including funk carioca, trap, reggae, a touch of cumbia and a cameo by the Orchestre de Chambre de Paris—and in true Latin American fashion she bathes even dark themes in upbeat tones. Her focal points are personal and societal, challenges of love, sexuality, hope and friendship amid burdens of corruption, violence and intolerance. In the Tarantino-inspired Billy Django she offers a dose of magical realism with a superhero from the slums who “Gets in the face/Of anyone who wants/To harm the innocent” (video 1). The apocalyptic flip side of the savior saga is Cidade Perdida (Lost City) depicting her beloved Rio de Janeiro, already in downward spiral, suddenly dealing with a new president who pours gasoline on the fire (video 2). In the title track Coelho proudly, defiantly spins the reality of blended blood into an anthem of self-acceptance (video 3). No Baile (On the Dancefloor, video 4) is a tribute to the artist’s father and his joie de vivre; while De Novo De Novo (Again and Again, video 5) reflects on the nagging tendency to make the same mistake repeatedly. From streets, cafés and celebrated stages, from neighborhoods poor and chic to the top of the Eiffel Tower, Coelho has seen the world from many angles. Experimental like Joyce, mystical like Allende, more polyglot than Hugo, she is the quintessential expat observer, scoring and singing an unforgettable soundtrack for the human condition. (PIAS/Le Label)

Related Post. Flavia Coelho: Sonho Real, Listening Post 101, May 30, 2017
https://worldlisteningpost.com/2017/05/30/flavia-coelho-sonho-real/

 

Billy Django
Lyrics: Flavia Coelho/Music: Victor Vagh-Weinmann & Flavia Coelho

(From the Portuguese lyrics)
He’s like that/No patience/
And he gets in the face/Of anyone who wants
To harm the innocent

Mama gave you experience/Grew up on the street
In the New West/Pull the iron trigger
Billy Django

Billy Django

Sisters in the cause/Brothers in the struggle
Indian in the forest/Having to run
Planet Earth is/Is ticking

In this country of fertile land
We need/A peacemaker/Who speaks loudly
Call Billy Django

Billy Django

He’ll stop you
He will/Stop you

Django

And call billy, billy
Billy Django

Billy

So much discord/Little talk
The environment/Too heavy
They do everything/To divide us
An SOS/Smoke signals
A candle/Burning nonstop
Where there’s smoke there’s fire
It’s Billy Django
Django

Billy

 

Cidade Perdida / Lost City
Lyrics: Flavia Coelho/Music: Victor Vagh-Weinmann & Flavia Coelho

Yeah, they told me/It’s a lost city/Close to the end
They told me/It’s a lost city/Close to the end

They closed the castle/Prejudice increased
Promises did nothing/It only got worse
Boom

Changed the name/Of the bomb/From TNT to RJ
Population on a tightrope/What do we do?/We’re against the wall

Whoever stole/The suitcase full of cash/Robbed the state
Fled the country/Corruption and fear
Of hands open palms/Held out

Open your mouth, you’re dead/Before your time
I saw a teacher/Poor, without a salary/Being threatened
Crime/It’s organized
Funding slashed/For school lunches
The needy child/Gets closer/To the pistol

Yeah, they told me/Lost city/Close to the end
Lost city/We want peace and unity
Solutions/Not orange juice

Now they limit access/To intelligence/And to culture
Initiating the setback/The beginning of the end
The return of censorship
Too many bosses/Too many mobsters
Informant, deposition/Talking too much is dangerous
Saw a doctor on parole/Who fled to the Maldives
And it’s bad for the workers/Really bad
High ranking Mafia, everything is fake, fake/Everyone is in the network
We’re in this terminal phase/And the suffering began
With the Portuguese caravels
Corruption arrived/Hidden inside them

Yeah, they told me/Lost city/Close to the end
Yeah, they told me/Lost city/Close to the end

Our tragedy/Is a divine comedy
Tragedy/A nuclear bomb

Leave home/Night or day
Not knowing/If you’ll return
Revolting/The crap hits the fan
Temperature rising
Dante’s Inferno/Pounding on the door
Suckled on the teat/Of the state bank

A disaster/It’s a family affair
Supplies running low/That’s why it’s teetering
It’s crazy/My blood is boiling
I’m not a doormat/I observe
In my notebook I vomit
What I read/What I see
What I think/What I feel

In the international context, it’s almost over
What was fundamental/Today belongs to the past
Our memory is in the ashes/Burned, extinguished last week
It is the beginning of/Book of Bullshit, chapter one

 

DNA
Lyrics: Flavia Coelho/Music: Victor Vagh-Weinmann & Flavia Coelho

Night and day/You always wonder
You want the right answer/That goes deeper
The definition/Of true identity
Where you come from/What makes you unique

Give thanks for the prize, the gift you won/Mixed blood
Running through your veins/You were created
In a cell made of love/Luxuriant richness that comes from inside

What comes from your roots/Is yours, no one can take it
It’s written, it is/It’s in your DNA

It’s in your DNA/It’s in your DNA
It’s in your DNA

Everything is more beautiful/Everything, everything is easy
When we finally accept/What we inherit
The connection with each/Each and every one
Even those who live far, far/Far away

Value every/Chromosome you inherited
Even your flaws/Of extravagant character
The personality is yours/Nobody else’s
When you were born/The universe spoke

Life is hard/It doesn’t last long, it depends only on you
This is logical/Your talent is genetic
Go read to understand/It’s biological

What comes from your roots/Is yours, no one can take it
It’s written, it is/It’s in your DNA

It’s in your DNA/It’s in your DNA
It’s in your DNA

 

No Baile / On the Dancefloor
Lyrics: Flavia Coelho/Music: Victor Vagh-Weinmann & Flavia Coelho

(Phone rings…) “Hi, sis. Dad left yesterday, posted some videos dancing with the group, drinking beer. You’re not home yet! Call me”

She told me/From Posto 1 to Copacabana/Ipanema, Barra, even
In São Gonçalo/He’s got a long list of venues
Drinks water from a can/Wants lots of fun
Wants to stay until the end of/The big dance

Sunday is the big dance-off
With the teams in Xerém to represent/Where they come from
Many lips to kiss/My sister is going crazy
‘Cause dad is having a great time

Won’t be back until tomorrow/He’s on the dancefloor

Poppa jumps from one place to another/Bouncing all around
Medicinal perfume/Made from herbs
Green leaf for protection
Fluminense forever!/See them win in Maracanã/Your team wins
Little sister, try to show/More tolerance
Poppa’s going back/To his youth
Flirting on an app/Getting lost in the crowd
Having the time of his life

Won’t be back until tomorrow/He’s on the dancefloor

My sister told me/That he just wants to dance pagode
Tuesday night/“No one can go with me”

To Duque de Caxias, Méier/Quintino
Went out Thursday night/Drank some vanishing tea

And Poppa/Is living it up
Having a time in the club even as/The wind flows through in his dance steps
He worked hard/Many years
Now he wants to be in the thick of life/Rebooting himself with jumper cables
Going for broke/Funk with xote rhythm
Big time dancing/Going crazy!

 

De Novo De Novo / Again and Again
Lyrics: Flavia Coelho/Music: Victor Vagh-Weinmann & Flavia Coelho

Again he arrived/Covered in lipstick
I pretended I didn’t see/My voice changed tone
I’m beyond jealousy/I decided to just leave
Without warning/Without saying anything
From a guy who’s/Immature
Complicated/Complex/Words in the wind
The wheel of life/Has moments
When it knows how to shuffle/My poor thoughts

Looking for the one/Who’s the perfect fit
Why doesn’t this/Person find me?
Where’s my other half/My perfect slice
The missing part/To complete me?

Take it in the head/Again and again

If it’s a game/I give up
If you open fire/I won’t complain
I marry and separate/In life I always exaggerate
From the pole position/I end at the opposite pole from love
It’s no use living without/Feeling pain
I do everything I can/To find happiness
I pray, I give thanks/That’s my priority
I get in line/At the lost and found
Of unrequited love

Looking for the one/Who’s the perfect fit
Why doesn’t this/Person find me?
Where’s my other half/My perfect slice
The missing part/To complete me?

Take it in the head/Again and again
Take it in the head/Again and again

I’m prone to exaggeration/A leaky boat
In the sea of sentiment/I wash my ego
One more/Who can’t swim
Enter the water/Certain of sinking

Looking for the one/Who’s the perfect fit
Why doesn’t this/Person find me?
Where’s my other half/My perfect slice
The missing part/To complete me?

Take it in the head/Again and again
Take it in the head/Again and again

 

 


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s