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Best interpretation of "Formiga Bossa Nossa"?

Discussion in 'Português (Portuguese)' started by Lisboaestbon, Nov 23, 2013.

  1. Lisboaestbon Junior Member

    English - Canadian
    I have read the typical discussions/arguments on the forum among the Spanish speakers and both types of Portuguese speakers, but all the wonderful arguments over the origins and usage of the word "bossa" fail to help me understand the meaning of this fado song title: Formiga Bossa Nossa.

    I somehow doubt that the title means: Ant Swelling/Bruising Ours

    Can someone please enlighten me?
     
  2. Joca

    Joca Senior Member

    Florianópolis, Brazil
    Brazilian Portuguese
    In this case I think "bossa bova" means trendy, fashionable...something different from the current or usual pattern.

    Since I don't know the song, it could mean something else, though.
     
  3. Lisboaestbon Junior Member

    English - Canadian
    But I did not ask about "bossa bova."(I think you mean "bossa nova"?) I am not a stranger to "bossa nova". Forgive me if my Portuguese is that terrible, but I did not suspect that "bossa nossa" would be equal to "bossa nova" or "bossa bova"(whatever that is).
     
  4. Joca

    Joca Senior Member

    Florianópolis, Brazil
    Brazilian Portuguese
    Oh, my God. I made a real mess. lol. My only excuse is that I had just waken up when I wrote my first post, so maybe my mind was still somewhat cloudy. Sorry.

    I will write again.

    Actually I read "bossa nova" (I spelt it wrong, too) rather than "bossa nossa" in your post. It is just a coincidence that there is also a song by this title "Formiga bossa nova".

    Maybe it's the same?

    Now "bossa nossa" doesn't mean much to me. It could be a pun on "bossa nova".
     
  5. Lisboaestbon Junior Member

    English - Canadian
    If it is a "pun," it could also be opposite to what you suggested. "Bossa nossa," may have existed before the "bosso nova" version. Anyway, I checked the song you suggested but I cannot compare the lyrics because I cannot find "Formiga Bossa Nossa" lyrics anywhere on the internet. If you have nothing better to do with your life, Joca, you could listen to both songs on youtube and let me know whether the lyrics are essentially the same. However, what we really need is a fado expert to answer my question. Any Portuguese fado fan should know the song in question immediately.
     
  6. Lisboaestbon Junior Member

    English - Canadian
    Okay, Joca, I don't know which song title was used first, but "Formiga Bosso Nossa" seems to follow the lyrics of "Formiga Bosso Nova" as far as I can tell. Therefore, thanks for letting me know about the song with the slightly different title.
     
  7. Joca

    Joca Senior Member

    Florianópolis, Brazil
    Brazilian Portuguese
    LOL, you are amusing. That is a hard question to answer: whether I have nothing better to do with my life.... How profound! ;) But I will listen to both songs on the net and will let you know. Soon. On second thoughts, "bossa nossa" could also mean something like "of our kind", "like we think it should be/behave...", "in our own fashion/way/tradition", whatever. I hope you get the drift.

    Oh, reading your latest post again... maybe I don't need to listen to the songs, since you already know that both lyrics are about the same. But I will listen anyway, for I am afraid there is nothing better for me to do right now, lol.
     
  8. Joca

    Joca Senior Member

    Florianópolis, Brazil
    Brazilian Portuguese
    As far as I can hear, it's the same song...
     
  9. Carfer

    Carfer Senior Member

    Paris, France
    Portuguese - Portugal
    No, it isn't. "Bossa nossa" is a spelling error. The original poem by Alexandre O'Neill (Portuguese despite his name) is titled "Formiga bossa nova" (ant, bossa nova style). The poem is based on a traditional tale about the ant (believed to be industrious and hardworking) and the cicadas (seen as a farniente, nonchalant, carefree, always singing character). "Bossa nova" refers to the music style which departs strongly from traditional fado. The lyrics of both versions (Amália's and Adriana Calcanhoto's) are obviously the same.
     
  10. Lisboaestbon Junior Member

    English - Canadian
    So, Carfer, you are certain that Amalia, or her record producers merely made a "spelling error"? Do you have any citations for that claim? Personally, I like Joca's suggestion better. Obviously "Bossa nova" is radically different from traditional fado, which again supports Jaco's idea of a play on words, since Amalia is doing the song in "our" way. I think you entirely missed the sarcasm in the post you quoted above. I was merely giving Jaco a hard time for totally misreading my question and offering a totally useless answer.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2013
  11. Lisboaestbon Junior Member

    English - Canadian
    Joca, do you think the use of "nossa" could have been used to give a meaning of "wow," rather than "our"? Maybe we can take either meaning? I think it makes sense that some sort of play on words is going on here, since Amália, a fado artist, would not have wanted to have a song on her album that included "bossa nova" in the title. "The ant is cool! Wow!" kind of suits the lyrics, does it not?
     
  12. anaczz

    anaczz Senior Member

    À beira do Oceano Atlântico
    Português (Brasil)
    Quanto à possível origem do termo bossa:

    A palavra bossa é tomada como aptidão, jeito, estilo, tendência para alguma coisa (arte, esporte, etc.). Termo muito popular nos anos 60, daí a bossa nova, por exemplo. Mas literalmente, bossa quer dizer caroço. De onde surgiu a gíria, então? Aparentemente veio da frenologia, muito popular no século XIX, que supunha que o formato do crânio, e suas protuberâncias, revelavam as tendências e pendores de uma pessoa. Hoje a frenologia está tão fora de moda quanto a bossa nova.
     
  13. Carfer

    Carfer Senior Member

    Paris, France
    Portuguese - Portugal
    On what grounds do you claim that the spelling error was Amalia's or her record producers'? I didn't say it was. I've never seen the song referred to as "bossa nossa" except in a couple of youTube video clips, one of them tagged 'bossa nossa' by the author of the clip but belied by the image shown on the video itself (look for "Helena Sarmento - Formiga bossa nossa - Fados dos Dias Assim", as links to youTube are not allowed in this forum) and in some internet sites that refer to an Amálias' EP by that title. So, I guess that the spelling error is of those videoclips and of those internet sites. By the way, there are lots of internet sites referring that particular song of Amália as 'Formiga bossa nova,' which makes much more sense than 'Formiga bossa nossa'. I am not specially fond of fado and therefore I'm not very interested or knowlegeable on fado matters but I know O'Neill's poetry. The title of that little poem varies depending on the source but it's usually titled 'Formiga bossa nova', 'Minuciosa formiga' or 'Velha Fábula em bossa nova', never 'bossa nossa' as far as I know. Was the title of the song changed in that EP? I don't know. If it was, I don't see the point in changing it as it detracts from the obvious association between the then trendy 'bossa nova' and that special ant that preferred singing and enjoying life to hard work that O' Neill's portrays. Was it a pun? An awkward attempt at implying that it was Portuguese way 'bossa'? Doubt that. There was never a Portuguese 'bossa' style of music. What would that mean? Anyway, O'Neill's poem was never titled 'bossa nossa', that's for sure.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2013
  14. Guigo

    Guigo Senior Member

    Rio de Janeiro
    Português (Brasil)
    No Brasil, no final dos anos '50 e início dos anos '60, muita coisa que era diferente ou que agia fora dos padrões, etc, recebia a alcunha de 'bossa nova'. Creio que tal expressão deva ter chegado em Portugal, onde o estilo musical foi popular, como de resto em várias partes do mundo (Vinícius de Morais era queridíssimo em terras lusas).

    Juscelino Kubitschek era o presidente bossa nova; ele era realmente fora dos padrões convencionais.
    Havia a marchinha de carnaval: "mulata bossa nova, caiu no 'hully-gully', que só dá ela..."; aqui, a moça não quer sambar e sim experimentar outra dança.

    Assim, faz muito sentido que seja "formiga bossa nova", pois a mesma pensa diferentemente do que dela se espera.
     

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