Click on the video above to play the song.
Marinês - Peba Na Pimenta - from Rico Ri À Toa (film) - unreleased version* - 1957
This is a bonus post... call it forró video gringo. Peba Na Pimenta was a huge hit for Marinês (pronounced Mad-dee-naise, for you gringos) back in 1957. This version, recorded for a film called Rico Ri À Toa, never appeared on LP as far as I’m aware. The hit version was much slower. It’s a shame, because I prefer this version by a hundred cows and two deserts. It was co-written by the amazing João do Vale, who will appear as a future post. The film shows the classic forró group instrumentation established by Luiz Gonzaga: zabumba (bass drum with 2 heads played with a bacalhau and soft mallet), accordion, triangle and traditional outfits with cangaceiros hats. Of course, recordings like this one were frequently beefed up with guitar or cavaquinho.
Marinês is a legend. She was the first big female star in forró and according to many accounts, was the first woman to form a forró group. Her career started in 1949, with her husband Abdias (a legend in his own right) and their group Casal da Alegria (Fun Couple). She was fortunate enough to be the protégée Mr Big Baião Britches himself, Luiz Gonzaga. Marinês released over 30 albums, many of which were beautifully recorded and released on RCA and CBS. She had the great fortune of recording for great labels with super studios. Most forró stars were not so lucky. Although later her music crossed over with MPB, she always had more than a sprinkle of nordeste.
* I swiped this video from YouTube. I should credit the blog Retalhos Históricos de Campina Grande, who originally posted the video. I fixed the audio, which was mono in one channel and had a buzzing noise in the other, which I removed.