Music

Song lyric and research: Galho Da Limeira

This blog post has been updated on 22/02/2017. Scroll down to read the updates.


Today I would like to share a song that caught my attention earlier this week. It’s called Galho da Limeira (or Roseira) and it is mostly sung in Capoeira Angola, although you can use it in different styles as long as the tempo matches. I found 2 completely different versions of this song online and I like them both. The second one gives more energy in the roda to my taste.

Version 1: Galho da Limeira

I found this song while browsing videos of Mestre Pernalonga (I’m a big fan of his!). It’s the first song in this video. I knew I had heard the song before, but couldn’t remember where. A few days later I was listening to the album No Tempo Que Se Destina (by Mestre Pernalonga and Mestre Perna) and there it was, track 13! And then there’s another video of Mestre Pernalonga singing the same song, which gives me goosebumps. This is the text that I found online:

Portuguese

Da sua casa para minha,
tem menos de meia legua,
a estrada é mais profunda,
onde o suspiro navega

o galho da limeira
a enchente carregou
a maré já deu passagem
vou buscar o meu amor

da sua casa na minha,
corre um riacho no meio,
tu de lá dá um suspiro,
eu daqui suspiro e meio

coro

meu benzinho tem quatro coisas,
todas quatras é do meu gosto,
bom olhar, bom papo,
bom nariz e um lindo rosto

coro

eu tava beira da praia,
quando meu benzinho se embarcou,
foi o rosto mais bonito,
que eu vi que as ondas do mar levou

coro

já dizia meu avô,
uma tia minha falou,
que o coração é terra,
terra que ninguém pisou

coro

quem tem seu amor não dorme,
na porta de outro amor,
o sereno faz a cama,
e as estrelas, o cobertor

coro

English

From your house to mine,
it’s less than half a league,
the road is deeper,
where the sigh navigates,

the twig of the lime tree
the flood carried it away
the tide already gave passage
I am going to get my love

from your house to mine,
runs a stream in the middle,
you over there give a sigh,
I over here give half a sigh

chorus

my darling has four things,
all four to my taste,
good looks, a good chat,
good nose and a beautiful face

chorus

I was on the beach,
when my darling boarded,
it was the most beautiful face,
that I saw the waves of the sea take

chorus

my grandfather already said,
an aunt of mine spoke,
that the heart is the ground,
the ground that no one stepped on

chorus

who has love doesn’t sleep,
by the door of another love,
the serene make the bed,
and the stars, the blanket

coro

* Not every verse is used in every video / track. This is more of a reference of the possible verses you can sing.

Version 2: Galho da Roseira Quebrou

When looking into the lyrics of the song I came across a shorter version. I don’t know which is the original one, but I like this version a bit more because it has some swing to it. On the other side, the verses that Mestre Pernalonga sings are very beautiful… The song in the video goes like this:

Galho da roseira quebrou,
a enchente carregou,
quando a maré baixar,
eu vou buscar meu amor

galho da roseira quebrou,
a enchente carregou,
quando a maré baixar,
eu vou buscar meu amor

quando a maré baixar,
eu vou buscar meu amor

The twig of the rose bush broke off,
the flood carried it away,
when the tide lowers,
I am going to get my love

the twig of the rose bush broke,
the flood carried it away,
when the tide lowers,
I am going to get my love

when the tide lowers,
I am going to get my love

There’s also this video of Mestre Dois Cruzeiros where he sings a very similar version. It’s a pretty cool video by the way, I like to listen to it in the background because it’s very calm and relaxing. Mestre Dois Cruzeiros sings the second part differently, his version goes:

Galho da roseira quebrou,
a enchente carregou,
quando a maré baixar,
eu vou buscar meu amor

galho da roseira quebrou,
a enchente carregou,
quando a maré baixar,
eu vou buscar meu amor

quando a maré baixar,
eu vou buscar meu amor

quando a maré baixar,
eu vou buscar meu amor

The twig of the rose bush broke off,
the flood carried it away,
when the tide lowers,
I am going to get my love

the twig of the rose bush broke,
the flood carried it away,
when the tide lowers,
I am going to get my love

when the tide lowers,
I am going to get my love

when the tide lowers,
I am going to get my love

Bonus

Finally, if you want to take this a step further and use more verses in the version of Mestre Pernalonga, watch this video where they seem to improvise the verses. It’s actually a very cute video. I first thought that all those verses came from samba de roda (still possible), but after a bit of research I found out most of them are from cantigas populares. For example, some verses come from the children’s song “Ai, entrei na roda”. So it’s cute that those -somewhat older- women are using verses of a nursery rhyme to improvise in a capoeira song.

I still don’t know the origin of Galho da Limeira. I can’t find any references to existing songs outside of capoeira, so for now I’m concluding that this song originated in capoeira.

The album of Mestres Pernalonga and Perna that I mentioned above has some other beautiful songs that I’ll try to share in future posts.

Updates

Reddit user deztley knew another verse for the long version of the song. It goes like this:

Tomara meu bem tomara
caia chuva bem fininha
pra molhar a tua cama
e você dormir na minha

I hope, my love, I hope
thin rain will fall, my dear
to wet your bed
and you to sleep in mine

This verse is originally not from capoeira. There’s a song called “Chuva Fininha” by Roberto & Meirinho that has almost the exact same verse. You can actually use the other verses from that song in Galho da Limeira too. I came across another song from Roberto & Meirinho, called “Teu Desprezo” where the verses also fit nicely in Galho da Limeira, one example:

Da roseira nasce espinho
mas nasce também a flor
do meu amor o carinho
do teu desprezo a dor

From a rose bush grows a thorn
but also grows a flower
from my love grows affection
from you contempt grows pain

Awww…that’s a sad twist. As you can see, a lot of verses from other genres fit into the melody and structure of Galho da Limeira. With a bit of creativity, you could easily create your own. That is what Contra-mestre Rafael de Lemba did. He took a verse from the children’s song “Ai, entrei na roda” (which I referenced under the bonus section above) and altered it:

Original

Sete e sete são quatorze
com mais sete, vinte e um
tenho sete namorados,
só posso casar com um

Altered

Sete e sete são quatorze
com mais sete, vinte e um
tenho sete berimbaus,
cada dia toque um

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *