Aug 14, 2012

garota de Ipanema slavi 50 godina

Ipanema is a trendy, rather artsy neighborhood in south Rio de Janeiro.  To the west is the upscale area of Leblon and to the east is Aproador and Copacabana.  A block off Ipanema Beach was Tom Jobim's favorite hang-out, the Bar Veloso.  A veranda-style, open-air cafe, this was the place to drink beer, smoke cigarettes, read the paper, chat with friends, and watch the pretty girls.
Almost every day a certain girl passed by the Veloso. Often in her school uniform, sometimes in her two-piece bathing suit she was, of course, tall, and tan, and young and lovely with long brown hair and green eyes and a rather sensual way of swaying her hips. She did not go unnoticed by Jobim and friends who often greeted her with whistles and cat-calls.  The girl, however, never responded to the men. Never did she stop to talk; indeed never did she even make eye contact with bar’s patrons.  Each day when she walked to the sea, she looked straight ahead, not at anyone else. And Jobim was in love.  

Basically a shy man, Jobim was afraid to approach the girl.  At the time he was married with two children and knew he had to be at least twice her age, but that did not prevent a budding infatuation.  Eventually he convinced his old lyricist buddy Vinicius de Moraes to come by the Veloso to see this girl.  After several days of waiting the girl finally walked past. Jobim remarked “"Nao a coisa mais linda?" (Isn't she the prettiest thing?), to which de Moraes replied, "E a coisa cheia de gracia." (She's full of grace.).  This sparked the creativity in De Moraes who wrote those two lines on a napkin. The lines provided the basis for the opening two lines of the original, Portuguese version of A Garota de Ipanema (The Girl from Ipanema). This girl who “swings so cool and sways so gently” first stepped out in public on August 1962, in a cramped Copacabana nightclub. 
At first, people in the audience just listened. But they’d come back, and would start to sing along. After that, bossa nova just exploded.On stage together, for the first and only time, were the architects of bossa nova: Tom Jobim on piano and Joao Gilberto on guitar. The small club — 20 by 130 feet — sold out every night as patrons realized something extraordinary was happening on the cramped little stage. Bossa nova was still young then, somewhat of a novelty even in Rio. The name meant “new trend” or “new way,” and that’s what it was: a fresh, jazzy take on Brazil’s holiest tradition, the samba. The rhythm was the same. But where samba was cathartic, communal, built on drums and powerful voices, bossa was intimate, contemplative, just a singer and a song. The melody, on guitar or piano, stepped up to the front. Percussion receded, played sometimes with brushes for a softer texture reminiscent of surf washing on the sand.

Djevojka koja je inspirisala Jobima i De Moraesa se, naravno, zvala Heloísa Eneida de Menezes Paes Pinto, poznatija medju prijateljima kao Helo, i...

... was a born and raised Rio de Janeiro girl – a true carioca. The daughter of an army general from whom her mother divorced when Helô was 4, she grew up on the Rua Montenegro, some blocks up from the Bar Veloso.  At age 17 she was shy and quite self-conscious: she had crooked teeth, she felt she  was too skinny, she suffered from frequent asthma attacks, and she had an allergy that reddened her face.  And on her way to and from school and on her treks to the beach, she had to walk by the Bar Veloso.

Although the song had been around since 1962, it wasn’t until 1964 that Helô learned the truth.  Friends introduced her to Tom Jobim, who still hadn’t worked up the courage to talk with her.  But with the ice finally broken, he set out to win her heart.  On their second date, he stated his love for her and asked her to marry him.  But she turned him down.  Two things got in the way.  Helô knew Tom was married and that he was “experienced”, whereas she was inexperienced and would not make him a good wife.  The other was that she had been dating a handsome young lad named Fernando Pinheiro from a prosperous family in Leblon since she was 15.  Undaunted by her refusal, Tom told her that she was the inspiration for the song.  This confirmed the rumors she had heard from others and, of course, thrilled her beyond imagination, but she still turned him down.

The world would not learn the truth until 1965.  Tired of all the gossip  and particularly concerned that a contest was going to be held to select “the girl from Ipanema” Vinicius de Moraes held a press conference.  In a detoxification clinic in Rio where he was undergoing treatment (you’ve got to love poets), and with Helô at his side, De Moraes told the world.  And he offered her one more testament:

"She is a golden girl, a mixture of flowers and mermaids, full of light and full of grace, but whose character is also sad with the feeling that youth passes and that beauty isn’t ours to keep.  She is the gift of life with its beautiful and melancholic constant ebb and flow."

Uprkos svemu i iznenadnoj slavi...

... Helo had a traditional upbringing, and the song did little to change that, she said. Between her strict parents and her fiance, then husband, she turned down invitations to do films and shows on TV.
“I was flattered, of course. But it left me wondering, do I really deserve all this?” she said. “It was a weight, trying to please everyone, to show these characteristics that the song called for.”
Her fiance, who had been her high-school boyfriend, pushed for a quick wedding, and she spent the next decade as a housewife.


Now, at 68, she’s far more comfortable with her notoriety, doing two TV shows and planning to launch a book in English about her past. “Back then, I never thought I’d get old,” she said. “But youth passes. We have to live each moment.”


  1. Ovako nešto zanimljivo o stvari koju uzimam zdravo za gotovo bih samo na ovom blogu mogla pročitati :)

    1. drago mi je da ti se svidjela prica :)